Newcastle Waste Commission report sets out path to 65 per cent recycling by 2030

Newcastle could make the leap to a 65 per cent recycling rate by 2030 and reduce waste by up to 10 per cent by 2025, according to a new report from the Newcastle Waste Commission, which outlines a set of recommendations including a voluntary ban on single-use plastics in the city.

The Commission was set up a little under a year ago by Newcastle City Council to investigate ‘radical’ solutions to managing the city’s waste and met six times in London and Newcastle to gather evidence from a range of organisations and businesses in order to compile its report.

Released today (1 February), the 50-page publication entitled ‘No Time To Waste’ and put together by the independent Commission, made up of seven waste industry professionals, seeks to chart a course towards making Newcastle a world leader in waste reduction, with community action at its heart.Newcastle Waste Commission report sets out path to 65 per cent recycling by 2030

Heidi Mottram, Chair of the Commission and Chief Executive of Northumbrian Water Group, stated that the report is “written with as little jargon as possible in the hope partners and communities will read it, come together, and decide how they want to make Newcastle a world leader in dealing with waste”.

Newcastle is a good example of the growth of cities and the necessity to address growing amounts of waste. The city of 300,000 (with 900,000 in the Tyneside area), is expected to grow by at least 30,000 by 2030. This growth, the report notes, has the potential to generate more waste, and the city already collects 142,000 tonnes of waste every year, a quantity that is becoming increasingly costly to process.

Presenting the report’s findings, Mottram stressed the importance of waste reduction, saying: “Waste, and how we deal with it, is one of the biggest challenges facing our generation. Thanks to TV programmes like Blue Planet II the threat that it poses have struck a chord with millions of people and there now appears to be a growing acceptance that we can’t just carry on doing the same old things.

“We all have a responsibility to wise-up to waste and do our bit. This report is full of ideas, big and small, short term and long term. I want as many people as possible to read it. If everyone pledges to do at least one thing then together we can make a big difference. Ultimately, the people of Newcastle hold the key to success. By reducing waste, recycling more and reusing everyday items, the city can make a step change.”