Recycling Carbon Index 2013/14

29th April 2015

by James Fulford, Simon Hann

Eunomia’s third annual Recycling Carbon Index Report shows that the CO2 emissions savings from local authorities’ waste and recycling services have improved markedly between 2012/13 and 2013/14 despite the levelling off of English recycling rate performance.

  • Recycling by local councils across England, Wales and Northern Ireland saved more CO2 in 2013/14 than ever before.
  • In England, 64% of authorities have improved their Recycling Carbon Index performance, in Wales 81% improved, and in Northern Ireland 73%.
  • Eunomia’s online interactive tool ( allows councils’ CO2 savings to be compared with one another and between years

Council recycling services in England saved 4% more greenhouse gases in 2013/14 than in 2012/13 and Welsh authorities achieved an increase of 6%. Northern Ireland’s local authorities achieved the biggest improvement diverting a full 7% more carbon over the same period.


Increased captures of metals and plastics have been critical to the increase. In 2013/14, 1.7 million tonnes of carbon were saved as a result of recycling these materials, which have higher levels of embodied carbon than other recycling such as paper, card or glass.

This report is available free of charge. Press the orange button and supply a few details about yourself in order to access the download.