Question 13/19


As a resident of the Rother District increasingly concerned about the climate crisis we are facing and the way our household waste can be disposed of in a way that is best for the environment we live in, I would like to know why Rother District Council does not offer it’s residents the opportunity to have their food waste composted, when three of our neighbouring districts – Tunbridge Wells, Ashford, and Folkestone and Hythe – all offer a service that deals with food waste in a more environmentally friendly way than landfill to their residents. (03/07/2019)


Please be assured that less than 5% of East Sussex domestic waste goes to landfill.   The Newhaven Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) handles all materials that are presented by residents as residual waste (including food) and produces electricity.  As such, this disposal method is a more environmentally friendly option than landfill because it produces power from waste.

Until very recently Rother District Council managed its waste services in partnership with Eastbourne, Hastings and Wealden councils under the direction of the Joint Waste Committee.    (From 29th June 2019 the partnership arrangements exclude Eastbourne.)

The relative benefits and problems associated with collecting food waste has been a long standing challenge for all councils and in 2015, the East Sussex partnership prepared a public report on this matter, which I attach for your information and hope that it answers most of your questions.

In 2018, the draft UK Waste Strategy strongly suggested that the government could implement a statutory requirement for councils to collect and dispose of food waste but the final position on the legislation which would support the strategy will not be known until next year. (09/07/2019)

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