Autumn Budget 2018: Key Waste Points

Autumn Budget 2018

Chancellor Philip Hammond has published his 2018 Autumn Budget, covering many industries including waste and the environment.

The Chancellor spoke about a pledge to introduce a tax on single-use plastics which have less than 30% recycled plastic, but the ‘Latte Levy’ has been ruled out.

Some of the key points in the budget affecting waste and environment are:

Plastic Tax

The government will introduce a new tax from April 2022, on the manufacture and import of plastic packaging which contains less than 30% recycled plastic.

No Latte Levy

A tax on single-use plastic and paper cups was widely called for to help combat the 2.5 billion cups that end up in landfill. The government, after a consultation on the issue, believe that it is not “effective in encouraging widespread reuse”. However, this will be reconsidered if the industry doesn’t make enough progress.

“Really pleased that the Chancellor has been bold in the latest Budget and used the levers available to central government to encourage the use of more recycled content in plastic packaging. More needs to be done, but we believe that this will begin to transform the recycling industry in the UK and begin a shift toward much more UK reprocessing. In a post Brexit era, the UK has a big opportunity to lead the world in circular solutions that protect our planet and we think this is a good start”

– James Capel, CEO.

£20 million to tackle plastics and boost recycling

The £20 million will be split in two, £10m will be set aside for research and development into plastics and the remaining £10m will be used for pioneering innovative approaches to boosting recycling and reduce litter.

Abandoned waste sites and food waste

A government pilot scheme will make £10 million available to the Environment Agency to work with partners to clear the worst abandoned waste sites – a site where the operator can’t afford to move the waste or has gone into administration. Ministers will give £15 million to charities and others to distribute excess food.

Investment in tree-planting

£60 million will be spent on planting millions of trees across the country. It’s broken down into a £10m project to plant new street and urban trees, the remaining £50m will be used to purchase credits from landowners who plant woodland.