£32.8 million in Scottish Landfill Tax (SLfT) was declared payable for the latest quarter, October to December 2021. This is the highest for the same quarter since 2017, although very similar to the value in 2018. The total tonnage of standard taxable waste was 352,100 in the latest quarter, which is the highest for the same quarter since 2018.
Total SLfT declared due, and tonnes of taxable waste reported, are lower than they were when SLfT was introduced in 2015. Since the same quarter in 2015, the total SLfT declared due has decreased by 11%, disposals of standard rate waste have decreased by 23%, and disposals of lower rate waste have decreased by 47%. Much of the decrease in revenue and tonnes of waste occurred between 2018/19 and 2019/20, and have fluctuated in the last two years which have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Revenue has decreased less than the tonnage of taxable waste predominantly because the standard rate of tax has increased by 2-3 per cent each year.
Typically, more taxable waste is declared for April to September each year than for October to March. 2020 broke this pattern: April to June 2020 saw unusually low taxable disposals (40 per cent less SLfT declared due than the same quarter of the previous year), during the first UK-wide lockdown of the COVID-19 pandemic. Similar patterns were seen for other parts of the UK. From July to December 2020 onwards, SLfT declared due returned to a slightly higher level than the same quarters of 2019/20. It is difficult to separate out the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on SLfT from the underlying trend, but the large drop in revenue in Q1 2020/21, and subsequent recovery in later quarters, is likely to have been strongly affected by COVID-19 restrictions.
27 operators provided returns for the latest quarter, covering 47 sites.
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