Recycling and waste strategy

Our vision

We will be a leading authority in minimising waste and tackling the climate emergency. We want to change the way we all think about waste, as it is a resource to be utilised and value recovered. We will lead our communities to inspire sustainable actions and provide an open, fair, and green service.

We’re focused on working with:

  • residents
  • local community groups
  • businesses
  • town and parish councils

Our targets

  1. a reduction in residual waste (waste that is not recycled or reused) of 15% the level of 2019-20 by 2030
  2. a recycling rate of 70% by 2030
  3. divert all non-recyclable, kerbside collected household waste away from landfill by end of 2022.
  4. review and update recycling facilities at all flat blocks, and continue to introduce food waste collections in phases in line with the Environment Act 2021 by 2023.
  5. expand the commercial waste service to serve more businesses, schools, and events in North Somerset each year.
  6. tackle incidents of litter and fly-tipping in North Somerset through improved reporting, increasing education, and enforcement activities.
  7. improved appearance of our streets and open spaces
  8. progress towards a circular economy where waste is treated as a valuable resource rather than disposed of

The starting point

In 2019-20 we had a recycling rate of 60.6%. This placed us ninth out of 341 English local authorities in the overall recycling performance league table. We are the best performing authority in the South West and second highest unitary authority in England.

In 2020-21 the recycling rate fell slightly to 60.4%. However, this placed us 7th in the league table and we continue to be the best performing authority in the South West.


Our areas for action

  • reducing waste
  • reuse
  • recycling
  • communications
  • commercial waste
  • composting
  • enforcement and tackling environmental crime
  • street cleansing
  • improving recycling centres
  • reviewing our service infrastructure and how to become closer to zero emissions
  • monitoring and measuring success

If you would like to know more about what we’re going to do in each of these areas and how we will be monitoring our progress, please download a copy of our Recycling and Waste Strategy 2021-2030.

Our next annual progress summary document will be published January 2023.