Milton Keynes Council and Northamptonshire County Council have been awarded £138m Private Finance Initiative (PFI) credits.

They will use the funding to help divert about 200,000 tonnes of biodegradable waste from landfill each year by 2020, saving an estimated 83,000 tonnes of carbon.

The two councils teamed up this year to tackle waste in their areas, and are aiming for a minimum recycling and composting rate of 55% by 2020 – 5% more than the national target.

Environment Minister Jane Kennedy, said: “I can today announce the formal approval of Milton Keynes Council and Northamptonshire County Council’s bid for £138m PFI credits to deliver new waste management infrastructures in their areas.

“This will create a real incentive for both the authorities and industry to work together to reduce waste and make better use of the waste that is produced, as well as reducing our impact on the environment.”

In 2006-07, the two councils collected a total of 508,060 tonnes of waste.

Municipal solid waste is expected to increase to 700,000 tonnes a year over the next 20 years, as nearly 160,000 homes are set to be built across the two councils’ areas.

Deputy leader of Northamptonshire County Council Ben Smith said: “Milton Keynes and Northamptonshire are likely to see significant housing growth over the next 20 years and the amount of waste being generated as a result is going to steadily increase.

“Although there are many schemes in place to ensure as much waste as possible is recycled and composted, there will always be a small amount left. We cannot continue to rely on landfill to dispose of this.”

The county council held an information day for companies in the waste industry on Tuesday setting out details of their Joint Waste Procurement Project.

Kate Martin

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