24 August 2011

Investment In Waste Infrastructure Creates More Jobs And Saves More Carbon Than Investment In Wind Farms

The ESA, the voice of the waste and resource management sector, today (Monday) publishes a new report quantifying the economic growth potential of the waste management sector and comparing its impact on jobs and carbon emissions with that of wind farms.

Matthew Farrow, ESA Director of Policy, said:
“The Government has been overly focused on high profile green sectors such as wind power and electric vehicles. Important as these may be, with the economy stumbling and having just adopted very tough carbon budgets, the Government is missing a trick if it does not act to realise the potential of the waste management sector.
Pound for pound, investment in waste infrastructure creates more jobs and saves more carbon emissions than investment in wind farms. Tomorrow’s Waste Review announcement must show the Government recognises the potential of the sector to deliver real ‘green growth.’”
The report, entitled Green growth: don’t waste the opportunity’ compares the jobs created and emissions saved by a £1bn investment in a representative ‘basket’ of waste management infrastructure with the same amount invested in onshore wind turbines. It finds that the waste infrastructure investment creates over four times more jobs (3,000 compared to 650), as well as saving much more carbon emissions (4 million tonnes compared to 1.4 million tonnes).

The report also quantifies the economic impact of the waste infrastructure investment needed to deliver the UK’s targets for waste management enshrined in EU law:

• Total investment needed by 2020: £7.5bn to £20bn (depending on mix of waste technologies deployed)
• Permanent £2bn increase in GDP
• 20,000 construction jobs supported during construction
• 25,000 permanent jobs created in the facilities

The ESA is calling on the Government, in the Waste Review, to put in place the investment framework that will enable the waste management sector to go forward with its investment plans. This framework must include:

• A clear place for energy from waste in energy policy
• A more predictable planning system for waste infrastructure
• A crackdown on illegal waste businesses which undermine the investments of responsible firms.

See more at the ESA website.

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