Somerset is UK's top recycling county
Somerset is the UK’s top county for recycling, new figures show – re-enforcing the potential for green businesses.
Somerset recycled an average of 51% of its household waste in 2007/08, more than any other county, saving £7million costs. In addition, 92% of it was recycled in Britain.
The statistics prove that Somerset is the UK’s leading green county and shows the potential for environmental and energy businesses in the county, says inward investment organisation Into Somerset.
Rupert Cox, Into Somerset’s interim CEO, says, “Our fast-growing energy and environmental sector is diverse, but has key strengths, particularly in renewable energy and nuclear power.
“Somerset County Council has been proactive in the development of wind power initiatives and other renewables, with a target of 15% of its sub-regional energy to be renewable by 2010.
“These initiatives – as well as our impressive recycling figures – make Somerset a natural home for businesses working with renewable energy, where there is an established network of professional expertise on tap and a robust supply chain.”
Somerset reused and recycled 163,282 tonnes of waste in 2007/08, saving an estimated 117,934 tonnes of carbon emissions – equivalent to taking 32,750 cars off the road for a year, show figures released by DEFRA, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
Steve Read, Managing Director of Somerset Waste Partnership, which manages waste services on behalf of Somerset’s county and district councils, said, “Simply, people in Somerset care about their environment and understand the need to build a sustainable future”.
Sustainable construction companies, renewable energy specialists, waste disposal companies, water technology firms and biomass plants are all represented by Somerset businesses.
Mr Cox added, “Into Somerset has carried out extensive market research, which shows the potential for businesses in this sector.
“The county has so much to offer companies working in this sector and with both existing and future projects like the Genesis Project and the possibility of the Severn Barrage; we are well positioned as one of the leading environmental counties in the UK.”
Hinkley Point B and the likely development of Hinkley Point C, plus a centre of excellence for decommissioning in Bridgwater College and a centre of excellence for energy, that makes Somerset a key location for further research centres and specialist companies to develop bases in the region.
Councillor Nigel Woollcombe-Adams, chair of Somerset Waste Board, said, "It's pleasing to be able to show that efforts made by local people are paying off for the environment and, with 163,000 tonnes recycled saving us almost £7million in disposal costs and landfill tax, it's good for our pockets as well.”
Recycling reduces carbon emissions, by saving energy in manufacturing processes and preventing the production of the greenhouse gas methane, which comes from landfilled biodegradable waste, such as paper and food.
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March 09 (PR12)