Landfill liability fund under a cloud

Support for the idea of a fund to cover the long-term environmental liabilities associated with landfills is ebbing within the waste management industry. Doubts over the scheme are likely to complicate the implementation of the new waste management licensing regime from next April - and conflict is also brewing over the scale of the financial guarantees which the Department of the Environment (DoE) is seeking to extract from landfill operators.

The idea of a landfill fund was originally mooted by the National Association of Waste Disposal Contractors (NAWDC) early in 1991 (ENDS Report 196, pp 12-13). Dubbed Newco, the fund would have accumulated cash from levies based on waste inputs to landfills during their operating life. After a site was closed and restored, the licence and associated liabilities would have transferred to Newco. Any expenditures on monitoring, gas and leachate co

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