12/08/2003

Bids invited for £135m waste management grant

Local authorities are set to gain a further £135 million from government to pursue sustainable waste management initiatives across England.

The new Waste Performance Reward Grant will be introduced in 2005/06 and will build on the Waste Minimisation and Recycling Fund. It is hoped that the grant will give authorities more flexibility on how to achieve the good practice currently emerging from local waste minimisation, recycling and composting projects.

The Waste Minimisation and Recycling Fund was first launched in 2001, and has since distributed £140 million to local authorities to help them to improve waste management and increase recycling.

Over two rounds of bidding, 254 projects have been successful – and will serve an additional 900,000 households, producing an extra three quarters of a million tonnes of recyclable materials and increase overall recycling rates by approximately 3% in 2003/04, according to local authority projections.

Bidding details will be provided to local authorities by Defra in September, when funds of £90 million will be made available in 2004/05 and £45 million in 2005/06. The new bidding round will be funded from the Waste Minimisation and Recycling Fund.

Environment Minister, Elliot Morley said: "How the country deals with its waste is becoming one of the most significant social, economic and environmental issues facing society today. I am very pleased therefore to tell local authorities that we are inviting bids, in September of this year, for a further £135 million for local waste minimisation, recycling and composting initiatives via Defra's Waste Minimisation and Recycling Fund."

(gmcg)

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