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Landfill Allowance Scheme

Information about how we monitor waste management in Wales

Landfilling biodegradable municipal waste (food, paper, and garden waste), can contribute to environmental problems such as leachate production - liquid that drains or 'leaches' from a landfill.

It also releases methane, a potent greenhouse gas, which can contribute to climate change.

About the Landfill Allowances Scheme

The Landfill Allowances Scheme (Wales) Regulations 2004 (The LAS regulations) came into force in Wales on 1 October 2004 to reduce the amount of biodegradable municipal waste going to landfill sites.

The landfill allowances scheme requires waste disposal authorities in Wales to limit the amount of biodegradable municipal waste that they send to landfill.

The amount that they landfill must be below the allowance that the Welsh Government has allocated to avoid being liable to a penalty.

Landfill Allowances Scheme results

Wales has reduced the amount of biodegradable municipal waste (food, paper, and garden waste) sent to landfill by 88 per cent over the last thirteen full years of the Landfill Allowances Scheme.

You can see the results from previous years in the 'Register of the Landfill Allowances Scheme (LAS) in Wales, 2004 onwards'.

Summary of 2017/18 results

Overall, Welsh local authorities sent 105,728 tonnes of biodegradable municipal waste to landfill compared to the 2017/18 Wales allowance of 370,000 tonnes. This is 71 per cent less than the allowance. This clearly demonstrates work to reduce the amount of biodegradable waste being sent to landfill by local authorities is succeeding.

Individual local authority performance

Caerphilly, Cardiff, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Isle of Anglesey, Merthyr Tydfil, Monmouthshire, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Vale of Glamorgan and Wrexham used the least amount of their allowances (no more than 10 per cent). This contrasts with Ceredigion and Swansea whom used over 70 per cent of their allowances. Pembrokeshire used over one hundred per cent of their allowance and therefore exceeded their Landfill Allowance allocation.

Data Limitations

A data quality issue has been identified with the formula for estimating the proportion of biodegradable waste in tonnages landfilled. The mass balance formula will be fully reviewed prior to publication of the 2018-19 scheme year results to ensure recent complexities in waste management and reporting are considered and identified limitations are addressed where feasible.

Previously published landfill allowances register data will be revised where applicable following the review.

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