HC Deb 28 May 2004 vol 422 c225W
Mr. Blizzard

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what her estimate is of the total amount of plastic waste generated by farming for each of the last three years; and what methods were used to dispose of it. [174470]

Mr. Morley

The Biffaward report, "Toward Sustainable Agricultural Waste Management" (2001), estimates that 109,000 tonnes a year of plastic arises as waste in the agricultural sector (England and Wales). The Agricultural Waste Survey (2003) indicates that most agricultural waste is currently disposed of on-farm by open burning, by burial or disposal in "farm dumps". The report and survey referred to are available on the Environment Agency's website at: www.environment-agency.gov.uk

The Government propose to consult later in the summer on the draft Regulations necessary to repeal section 75(7)(c) of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 and to apply to agricultural waste the controls already in place to comply with the Waste Framework Directive and the Landfill Directive (England and Wales). The consultation paper will also discuss the options for dealing with the recovery of non-packaging plastic waste from the agricultural sector—including the continuation of the existing local voluntary schemes or the introduction of a national voluntary or statutory producer responsibility scheme. Plastic packaging waste from the agricultural sector is already the subject of the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations 1997 (as amended).