Recycling and Fly-tipping
Thousands of tonnes of recycling are collected over Somerset every year, and every tonne is tracked, ensuring that nothing is dumped, burned or ends up at sea. Kerbside rubbish and suitable recycle site rubbish is sent to an energy-to-waste plant in Avonmouth, rather than landfill.
- Somerset collects around 263,000 tonnes of household waste a year (2020/21)
- 137,000 of this waste is sent for reuse or recycling. Almost 40,000 tonnes of this is garden waste, which is composted in Somerset and turned into Revive soil improver. 22,000 tonnes of food waste is sent to the Somerset anaerobic digestion plant at Walpole, and is transformed into electricity and farm compost.
- At 52.4% of the total, Somerset County Council is in the top fifth of authorities for recycling
- More than 50% of the Somersets recycling stays in the county for processing.
For more information see Somerset Waste Partnerships Recycling Tracker
Fly-tipping is the illegal deposit of waste on land, contrary to Section 33(1)(a) of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. Local authorities and the Environment Agency both have a responsibility in respect of illegally deposited waste. Fly-tipping is not only an eyesore, but can be a danger to public health, a source of pollution, and a risk to wildlife. Its is costly to remove, and can undermine legitimate waste businesses.
- In 2019/20, in Somerset there were 3,439 fly-tipping incidents reported, 668 incidents less than in 2018/19 (see Chart 7)
- The most common place for fly-tipping to take place was on highways (pavements and roads) which accounted for 80% of incidents in Somerset.
- The size category ‘small van load’ was most common, accounting for 46% of all fly-tipping incidents.
- In 2019/20, Mendip's reported incidents per head of population (13 per thousand) was considerably higher than the county average of around 7 per thousand yet below the national average of 17 per thousand. Somerset West and Taunton had the lowest rates, at under 3 per thousand.
Source: DEFRA, Flycapture
For more information see Fly Tipping data for all local authorities (DEFRA)