waste case studies

waste case studies

Ricardo waste and resource management case studies from around the world

Ricardo supports organisations across the world with waste projects, from strategy to implementation and review. See a selection of our projects below

Circular Economy Strategy

Yarrabilba, Australia, 2019-2020

The Lendlease Yarrabilba development is a test bed community of innovation and possibilities in Queensland. Lendlease wanted to understand what circular economy meant and the opportunities available, as well as wanting to be the first Australian master-planned circular economy community. Ricardo supported Lendlease to develop a detailed circular economy strategy and identify the opportunities available to deliver the vision. 

Read more about circular economy

Rochford District Council

Essex, UK

Ricardo carried out an extensive waste collection options appraisal and subsequently drafted a full procurement document suite for Rochford District Council. 

Read more about the Rochford Council case study

Epping Forest District Council

Essex, UK

Ricardo carried out a comprehensive waste collection service assessment for Epping Forest District Council. 

Read more about the Epping Forest Council case study

Environmental Services Association (ESA)


The Environmental Services Association (ESA) commissioned Ricardo to deliver the first UK-wide study to quantify greenhouse gas emissions generated by the recycling and waste sector and to assess how the industry could achieve net zero by 2040. The study quantified the level of direct, indirect, and avoided greenhouse gas emissions associated with the recycling and waste management sector activities, in order to establish the baseline emissions and understand the actions required to reduce emissions to achieve the 2040 target. 

Read more about the ESA case study

Welsh Local Government Association, WLGA,

Wales, 2021

WLGA wanted to understand what a potential stress test methodology could look like to understand the waste system vulnerabilities and opportunities to mitigate these. Ricardo developed a detailed technical report outlining a proposed framework and solutions, following an eight-week interactive consultation group programme with senior stakeholders across Wales.

Read more about the Welsh Local Government case study

Review of Carbon Reduction Activities and Education Programme

East Waste Regional Council, Australia, 2020

East Waste Regional Council (EWARC) was at a critical stage of its strategic planning. There was a new waste education campaign to improve recycling scheme performance and it also wanted to understand how waste service improvements could support the council’s potential wider carbon considerations following declarations of a climate emergency. Ricardo experts provided a critical review of the scheme performance and education campaign, providing key recommendations for improvements that would help meet its strategy target aspirations. Ricardo also provides a review of the opportunities and implication of carbon for the waste services that help the council provide an informed view on future service provision.

Metropolitan Waste and Resource Recovery Group (MWRRG) Waste Characterisation Projects Case Study

Melbourne, Australia

MWRRG was concerned that the waste composition studies previously commissioned by different councils in the region to inform their individual waste strategies were not sufficiently robust to inform the waste infrastructure development process. Over approximately a two-year period Ricardo provided technical advice through a series of projects, all focused on providing the right strategic framework to collect a robust evidence base from which to support key decisions on future waste infrastructure across the state. MWRRG now has a baseline data set that is informing the waste procurement process and strategic planning within the state.