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Local authority municipal waste management

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  • Release date: 15 February 2018
  • Period covered: July to September 2017
  • Next update: 28 June 2018
A report that provides information on the reuse, recycling and composting of municipal waste.

Key points

  • Based on provisional data, the local authority municipal waste combined reuse/recycling/composting rate was 64 per cent for the 12 months ending September 2017. This is an increase from 62 per cent for the 12 months to the end of September 2016.
  • In the July to September 2017 quarter, 65 per cent of local authority municipal waste in Wales was reused/recycled/composted. This represents a decrease of 1 percentage point when compared with the same quarter of 2016, which had the highest ever recorded recycling rate (66 per cent).
  • In the July to September 2017 quarter, the total amount of local authority municipal waste generated in Wales decreased by 3 per cent compared to the same quarter in 2016. The tonnage decreased from 426 to 413 thousand tonnes.


Data on waste management are collected in order to monitor progress towards national and local targets; in particular against the requirements of the Waste Framework Directive and the Landfill Directive. In its current waste strategy ‘Towards Zero Waste’ (2010), the Welsh Government set statutory targets of recycling 70 per cent of waste by 2024-25.

Data are sourced from the WasteDataFlow system, which is monitored by Natural Resources Wales. Quality information is available in the 2016-17 annual report.

Natural Resources Wales monitors and assists Welsh local authorities to continually improve the accuracy of their reported end destinations in WasteDataFlow. From 2017-18 there will be enhanced validation of specific materials throughout the scheme year to improve the accuracy and consistency of reported end destinations amongst local authorities. Consequently, the provisional data published in quarterly releases is more susceptible to change throughout the scheme year than in previous years.

Further information

Following a recent consultation on 'Proposed changes to local authority municipal waste statistical outputs' we have replaced the quarterly statistical report with a statistical headline outlining key points at a Wales level. Accompanying key data at a Wales and Local Authority level are published on StatsWales. We will not be publishing Quarter 4 (January to April) provisional data in August, but will publish Quarter 4 data as part of the final annual release (2017-18) in September 2018.

Key results and StatsWales are published quarterly and a report will be published annually.


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