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Tag: behavioural change

The industry is changing

20th October 2014 Posted by

I will soon celebrate my 12-year stint in the ‘waste industry’, as the recycling and resource sector was once referred to. I have done a lot of interviewing recently and was asked by one of the candidates why, after more than a decade, I was still in the waste business and working for SITA UK. The answer I gave was

If young people are disengaged, whose problem is that?

17th October 2014 Posted by

The headline from a recent YouGov poll examining public attitudes towards recycling was that Britain’s so-called Facebook generation (youth aged 18-24) “are the most apathetic generation when it comes to recycling waste”. Apparently only 57 per cent of 18-24 year olds admitted to being committed recyclers, with 71 per cent thinking recycling was not their personal responsibility. In contrast, the

Make the ‘inner loop’ of reuse the first priority

17th June 2014 Posted by

In articulating what a circular economy should look like, the latest thinking is that it is not just about recycling, where end-of-use articles and products are destroyed in order to recover the materials contained in them. There is a so-called ‘inner loop’ of reuse that should be prioritised first. Products that have come to the end of their ‘first’ life

Bag policy should be binned

11th February 2014 Posted by

The UK has had a penchant for over-complicating environmental legislation. The Landfill Allowance Trading Scheme (scrapped in 2013), the Carbon Reduction Commitment (supposedly simplified in 2012) and most notoriously, the Electricity Market Reform legislative package – described by one commentator as “a scheme which is liable to disintegrate under the weight of its own complexity” – spring to mind. The

Guidance on weekly rubbish collections

9th January 2014 Posted by

Waste managers are likely to read the Department for Communities and Local Goverment’s (DCLG) recent Guidance on Weekly Rubbish Collections with, at best, a sense of disbelief. In my view, the response of professional and trade bodies to date has actually been mystifyingly polite. Firstly, the document doesn’t provide “guidance … on how councils can and should deliver weekly rubbish

Glass half full

11th December 2013 Posted by

We are just emerging from one of the hardest and longest recessions in living memory. Thankfully, the economy is looking far healthier than it did a year ago, with construction activities picking up and manufacturing starting on the road to recovery. This last point was made clear to me recently at the Manufacturer Directors’ Conference in Birmingham, where I experienced

Missing opportunities

3rd December 2013 Posted by

The waste-to-resource sector is one of the most active, rapidly growing and capital-intensive sectors in the UK at this time. Our sector has a value in excess of £12 billion and directly employs well over 100,000 people. It reportedly grew at a rate of 3.1 per cent this year and is expected to grow by more than four per cent next

Little things can make a big difference

28th October 2013 Posted by

Energy policy and practice has a lot in common with the waste hierarchy, where minimisation is the first thing to look at. If we all want to keep our fuel bills down, we should try to reduce what we use and then find more sustainable ways of using the energy we need. Making more sustainable energy is a good goal

Food for thought

21st October 2013 Posted by

Tesco gave some challenging insight to food waste in their report “Tesco and Society: Using our Scale for Good” issued today. Nearly 30,000 tonnes of waste food from the supply chain, store and customer is a big target to work towards, but by my calculations this amounts to around 25kg per Tesco store per day or assuming Tesco’s 30 per

Landfill mining – an insight into the history of consumer society

10th October 2013 Posted by

Talking to Radio 4’s ‘Costing the Earth’ programme about landfill mining and the resources that have been embedded in landfill sites over the last 50 years, followed by a meeting where we contemplated the future of the waste sector in a sustainable resource economy, has given me an opportunity to reflect. Looking back and understanding what we as a society

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