April 2 2013.

In 2013, UK SMEs are forecast to throw away £463m in landfill tax by sending waste to landfill when they could be saving millions by recycling and becoming more sustainable. By 2014 if recycling rates don't improve this could amount to nearly £1 billion in two years.

These new figures will ring alarm bells with all small and medium sized businesses, reflecting that on the 1st of April the landfill tax rose from £64 to £72 per tonne and is anticipated to rise again in 2014/15 to £80 per tonne.

Estelle Brachlianoff, chief executive Officer of Veolia Environmental Services (UK) Plc commented: "We have now reached a stage where it is much more expensive to send waste to landfill than it is to recycle. Business need to realise that it's not just an environmental decision, it's an economic one with immediate benefits to the bottom line. In this time of austerity businesses are throwing money away when they could be more sustainable and reduce their bills at the same time.

"The solution is to develop a recycling mindset in the workplace based on segregating materials at source. Working together with SMEs we can put in place new separation processes that take advantage of the latest recycling and recovery technology that are sustainable and bring an immediate financial return."

The impact of rising landfill taxes on SMEs individually, and as a whole, is as follows:

• A typical SME will spend an average of £375 in 2013 on tax by sending waste to landfill, rising to £384 for 2014

• This could total over £750 per SME being spent in tax over the next two years

Veolia provides a number of services to help business reduce its waste and save money. The company provides a free, no-obligation site audit to show how to minimise waste production, what materials a business can recover and how to increase recycling participation, plus identify resale or reuse opportunities for recycled materials.

More information can be found at What Can I Recycle? and at