Home Waste News LGA challenges Defra to ‘raise the level of ambition’ for the targets

LGA challenges Defra to ‘raise the level of ambition’ for the targets

LGA challenges Defra to ‘raise the level of ambition’ for the targets

LOCAL Government Association (LGA) has published its official response to Defra’s consultation on its proposed new environment targets under the Environment Act 2021 to help meet the Government’s ‘vision’.

Among the many targets was one to “reduce residual waste (excluding major mineral wastes) kg per capita by 50 per cent by 2042 from 2019 levels”.

LGA responded that they disagreed with “the proposed scope of the residual waste target being ‘all residual waste excluding major mineral wastes’”.

“The exclusion of major mineral wastes significantly reduces the ambition of the target,” LGA argued. “Mineral waste, consisting of waste from construction and demolition such as bricks and concrete plus mineral waste from mining and other activities, was the largest category of waste in the UK at 84 million tonnes. Household waste made up 12 per cent of all waste generated, by contrast.

“Defra acknowledge that the lack of data is one of the reasons for excluding major mineral waste, and this data gap needs to be addressed.”

Defra’s targets covered areas of biodiversity, water and air quality, resource efficiency, waste reduction and more.

“It is helpful to see Defra’s thinking on the scope of long-term environmental targets,” LGA summarised. “As a next step, Defra needs to set out clear implementation plans with interim targets. Long term environmental targets must be matched with sustainable sources of funding and embedded across government. If any of the proposed national targets are applied to local government, this must be accompanied by funding for new burdens.

“For some target areas such as water, air quality and biodiversity we want to see Defra raise the level of ambition.”

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