Blueprint to slash carbon emissions from waste set to be adopted by councils across Liverpool

A blueprint to slash carbon emissions from waste is set to be adopted by councils across Liverpool City Region.

Reimagining the way the city reduces waste and manages recycling has been a major priority for the Mayor since her election in 2021. 

Liverpool City Region leaders nominated Mayor Joanne as political lead for waste, resulting in a strategy for all six authorities to roll out across the region.

It reflects her triple lock approach and is set to empower communities, deliver social value and respond to the climate emergency. 

Collecting, transporting and disposing of waste costs Liverpool taxpayers over £36 million a year and figures from 2019 show it contributes seven per cent to the city’s total carbon emissions. This is then collected and transported by train to a waste plant, incurring avoidable costs and carbon emissions.

The document sets a number of priorities: 

1: Accelerating actions to reduce carbon emissions

2: Improving community-based networks to reuse items 

3: Introducing community composting

4: Using waste as a resource to deliver social value 

The immediate priority is tackling food waste, which accounts for around 40 per cent of the material in bins across the city region and is a significant source of carbon emissions.

A group has been set up with the aim of:

  • Starting food waste collections as soon as possible 
  • Educating households about the best ways to reduce the amount of produce they throw out
  • Reducing food poverty by preventing waste collection
  • Ensuring residents have access to home or community composting 

Other proposals include: 

  • Developing a circular economy to eliminate unnecessary waste by keeping products in use
  • Establishing a reuse hub to promote reuse and repair activities
  • Collecting more materials in recycling bins 
  • Introducing mobile and localised Household Waste Recycling Centres 
  • Expanding educational and behavioural change activity  
  • Optimising waste collection rounds across council boundaries 
  • Purchasing zero-emission waste vehicles
  • Reducing waste crime such as flytipping

Mayor of Liverpool, Joanne Anderson, said: 

“Since becoming Mayor, I’ve been on a mission to transform how we reduce waste and improve recycling  across Liverpool City Region.

“I have always been passionate about waste but after a trip to Copenhagen, I was struck by the art of the possible. As one of the most sustainable and energy efficient cities in the world, their waste plant turns rubbish into heat and power, and even has a dry ski slope on its roof. 

“I am proud to have produced this blueprint and secured the support of the City Region’s leaders which sees us boldly responding to the climate emergency while improving the lives of our residents.

“I’d like to thank Carl Beer, former Chief Executive of Merseyside Recycling & Waste Authority who was instrumental in making this happen. His support and expertise were invaluable throughout this process. 

“The Zero Waste Framework is a road map to making Liverpool and the wider City Region a more sustainable place to live. As leaders, we have a responsibility to ensure we take tangible action – but it’s up to each and every one of us to play our part to ensure the future of our planet.” 

Lesley Worswick, Chief Executive of Merseyside Recycling & Waste Authority, said: 

“The LCR Zero Waste Strategic Framework outlines our commitment to changing how we view and manage waste and resources across the City Region.  

“It’s clear that achieving our targets of zero waste and net zero carbon by 2040 will have significant benefits for our people, our planet and the city region economy and this is a great starting point for action.”

Current activity in place to improve our environment include rolling out a network of underground bins in a £1.5 million scheme targeting 27,000 households who do not have space for wheelie bins; and the targeting of fly tippers by shaming perpetrators and highlighting prosecutions and fines. It is part of a wider campaign with Keep Britain Tidy to clean up the city. 

The Liverpool City Region Zero Waste Framework will be considered by the Cabinet on Friday 20 January, and will be adopted by other local authorities in February.

For more information about zero waste visit

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