Sector reactions: Encyclis says Efw ETS will have ‘profound effect’

Following yesterdays announcement that the government is planning to include energy-from-waste in the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), the sector has continued to react.

Owen Michaelson, Encyclis CEO, has said the expansion will have a “profound effect” on the sector, saying it needs to be “certain” that it has the intended effect of reducing waste generation and lowering society’s carbon emissions.

He added: “The scheme needs careful consideration to avoid unintended consequences, whereby landfilling or waste exports become the default option again. This would undermine the investment made in new facilities over the last 20 years which provide safe and sustainable treatment and recycling solutions.

“We need to maintain the integrity of the waste hierarchy, avoid untenable cost escalation and protect against carbon leakage. That will require the correct alignment with parallel policies, such as eradicating combustible waste from landfill, maintaining the parity of landfill tax with real rates of inflation, progress on packaging reforms and improving plastic recycling rates.”


Viridor echoes the sentiment that the announcement is important for achieving net zero,  but getting design and wider policy interactions right is “essential” if it is to be a success.

Viridor’s chief sustainability officer, Tim Rotheray, said: “The provision of a two-year monitoring period is really helpful to inform the sector and customers on how emissions trading will work. We need to ensure that the policy starts off as simply as possible with complexity building over time so that all sector customers can get used to the new rules and act to reduce the carbon content of waste in order to respond to the Emissions Trading Scheme signals.”

Following review of the consultation, Lee Hodder, managing director of Viridor Polymers, added: “It is really positive and important that the government has acknowledged the role of chemical recycling in enhancing the UK’s circular economy, and we welcome the plans to exempt chemical polymer reprocessing facilities as part of the Emissions Trading Scheme.”

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