WRAP study finds 78% of school waste is recyclable

25th July 2008

New research, published by WRAP, suggests that up to 78% of day-to-day waste produced by schools in England could be easily recycled or composted.  More than 70% of waste from schools comes from just two categories - food waste, and paper and card.

It is calculated that recycling or composting this waste could save local authorities more than £6m in landfill tax, and an estimated 176,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent emissions.

The study analysed a week's worth of waste from 24 schools in four different local authorities and found that, on average, primary schools generated 45kg of waste per pupil and secondary schools 22kg per pupil over the 40 week academic year.  This amounts to over 250,000 tonnes of waste produced by England's 20,871 primary and secondary schools each year.

Average recycling rates for schools in the study were 13% for primary and 20% for secondary schools.


WRAP says the findings are a useful indicator of the scale and nature of waste from schools and will be helpful in planning the more effective management of this type of waste.


The full report can be found at http://www.wrap.org.uk/schoolwaste.