To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what percentage of municipal waste going to landfill was biodegradable waste in the last year for which figures are available; and what estimate she has made of the likely change in the next five years.
In 2001–02, 28.8 million tonnes of municipal waste were collected, of which 22.3 million tonnes (77 per cent.) were disposed of to landfill. 70 per cent. of the waste land filled was estimated to be biodegradable using various assumptions. Surveys of biodegradable content of municipal waste are not made routinely, but the Environment Agency plan to carry out a survey to determine the biodegradable proportion of municipal waste arising.