Contracted waste services achieve higher recycling rates, says ESA report

A new report from the UK’s Environmental Services Association (ESA), produced by Eunomia Research and Consulting, has concluded that local authorities in England that contract out their waste services achieve higher recycling rates than in-house services.

Based on a sample of 58 local authorities across England, the ESA’s report found that over a seven-year period (2011/12 to 2017/18), the average recycling rate for contracted out services was 50 per cent, compared to 44 per cent for in-house services.

According to the report, almost 60 per cent of contracted services provide food waste collection, compared to just 22 per cent of in-house services.

The report also found that out-sourced services were better value for money, with authorities that contracted out their services achieving a 10 per cent lower cost of service per household per percentage point increase.