CAERPHILLY council has blamed contractual issues with a waste disposal company for failing to hit Welsh Government recycling targets.

The county borough council’s recycling rate dropped from 65 per cent last year to 62.5 per cent this year, failing to meet the statutory target of 64 per cent.

It was the only council in Gwent to record a fall in its recycling rate, and one of four across Wales not to meet the national target.

Cllr Nigel George, cabinet member for community services, said: “Earlier this year we were made aware of concerns raised by Natural Resources Wales about the way a third-party waste company disposed of textile materials.

“This waste could not be counted and subsequently led to a decline in our overall recycling performance of around two per cent.

“This is obviously very disappointing because, if this material had been processed properly as we were led to believe, then we would have achieved our statutory target.

“The council is taking appropriate legal advice to address this matter and we are also working with Welsh Government so that they fully understand the reasons for our shortfall.”


Cllr George added that the council is “taking all appropriate steps to ensure our waste disposal contracts are robust and monitored effectively to avoid any repeat of this type of incident in the future”.

Independent councillor Kevin Etheridge has raised concerns about the issue, and has written to Welsh Government environment minister Lesley Griffiths and Cllr George.

“We await comments from the administration in Caerphilly, having failed to meet targets dropping significantly, and we want details of what measures will be taken,” he said.

This was the first year of the new 64 per cent recycling target, having previously been at 58 per cent since 2015/16.

Councils could face a fine of £200 per tonne of excess waste for missing the target.

However the Welsh Government says it can also consider factors such as how many times a council has missed the target, how much it fell short by and what reassurances it has provided for future delivery before deciding upon fines.