The Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has revealed that 272,200 tonnes of refuse derived fuel (RDF) was exported in 2011.
Following a question from Dunfermline and West Fife MP Thomas Docherty in the House of Commons, Environment Minister Richard Benyon said that between 2008 and 2011 exports of RDF increased from zero to 272,200 tonnes.
Richard Benyon added: “Data for 2012 has not been finalised, but based on provisional estimates it is expected to show a substantial increase in exports of refuse derived fuel from 2011.
“Over the past two years, UK competent authorities have received an increasing number of applications from waste companies wanting to export wastes for energy recovery, including refuse derived fuel. The move to divert municipal waste from landfill and increases in landfill tax mean that it can now be more economic for companies to export this material than to send to landfill.
“As with other types of waste, refuse derived fuel is a commodity that can legitimately be exported, as long as this is in accordance with the requirements of the EU Waste Shipments Regulation.”