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Materials Recycling World
29 July 2005

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  • 13 massive retailers sign up to WRAP plan

    Some of the country's biggest food retailers have joined forces with the Waste and Resources Action Programme to reduce the amount of food and packaging waste thrown away by the British public. Asda, Boots, Budgens, the Co-operative Group, Londis, Iceland, Kwik Save, Marks & Spencer, Morrison's, Sainsbury's Somerfield, Tesco and Waitrose have pledged their commitment at executive level to support the programme. This involves to design out packaging waste growth by 20
  • A recycling adventure: BMW and Mini dealers get new waste contract

    Car manufacturer BMW is introducing an improved waste management and recycling programme for its BMW and Mini dealerships and authorised bodyshops. The programme is designed to offer a single contract for all waste collections. It also aims to reduce the amount of workshop waste that is disposed of in landfill sites to no more than 5%. Automotive Waste Solutions (AWS) has been appointed to run the service. BMW (UK) director of aftersales Steve Nash said
  • Award success for RWM and MRW

    Several bottles of bubbly were cracked open by RWM and MRW staff last week to celebrate the capture of two highly prestigious awards. At the Emap Communications Awards 2005, held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London, RWM 04 won Exhibition of the Year, while the MRW display/RWM Exhibition Sales team won Sales Team of the Year. RWM event director and MRW publisher Steve Crowhurst said: "This award proves that RWM is definitely the number one exhibiti
  • Comment: The Big Challenge

    Tackling packaging and food waste is a big challenge that has this week been embraced by both the Government and retailers. The Courtauld Commitment signed by 13 retailers following discussions with Environment Minister Elliot Morley, the Waste and Resources Action Programme and the British Retail Consortium (BRC) sets a number of actions to reduce packaging generated in retail outlets. The targets involve designing out packaging waste growth by 2008, delivering absolute reductions
  • EA calls for more use of ASBOs

    More use should be made of Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) to prevent environmental crime, the Environment Agency (EA) has said. In its annual Spotlight report on the environmental performance of businesses in England and Wales, the EA said that criminals are exploiting the public and profiting illegally from dumping and other damaging activities. An ASBO was awarded for environmental crime for the first time in 2004 to prevent the owner of a plant and skip hire bus
  • Electronics major to recycle bio blends

    Japanese company Sharp has developed technology to mix corn-derived bioplastics with conventional plastics recovered from scrapped consumer appliances. The company said it expects to use such blends in its consumer electronic products by early 2007. Petroleum-derived plastics are generally incompatible with bioplastics so blends tend to show inferior properties such as impact strength and heat resistance. Sharp, however, claims to have overcome these problems with a micr
  • EU proposes new battery rules

    The European Union (EU) Council of Ministers has agreed in principle to a directive designed to curb environmental damage from the disposal of batteries and accumulators by reducing the volume of mercury they contain and increasing their collection and recycling. This proposed legislation requires member states to ban products containing more than a specified percentage of mercury, calling for programmes to reduce the heavy metal content of batteries and accumulators and to encoura
  • Feature: cleaner and greener

    Once the undisputed powerhouse of Europe, Germany's increasingly gloomy mood is more sick man of Europe than global go-getter. With unexpectedly early elections around the corner, some might say that German pessimism is a self-fulfilling and somewhat inaccurate view of their current situation. Environmental and waste issues aside - where its progressive approach singles it out for European praise - Germany is in the grip of an economic negativity that could make for a
  • Feature: Holistic remedy

    In the early 1980s, Michael Braungart was a Greenpeace scientist working on a rather unorthodox campaign to clean up the paper industry. As expected, the paper bigwigs were not impressed, especially when their waste and water pipes were blocked. Twenty years later, all of the targeted companies have adopted Braungart's proposed technology. Understanding his pedigree is important when you consider his current views on waste minimisation, recycling and sustainable development. Becaus
  • Feature: Industrial and consumer products a mine of PGMs

    According to a new study published by Gold Field Mineral Services (GFMS), almost half of Germany's annual demand for platinum group metals (PGMs) is satisfied by recycled material. Moreover, products still in use and yet to be manufactured point to a growing resource, and the introduction of environmental legislation should lead to even higher usage of secondary PGMs in the future. Using data for 2001*, Belgium's speciality materials company Umicore and Germany's environmental rese
  • Feature: Moving forward to stand still

    In 1961, a WWF (then the World Wildlife Fund) report Limits to Growth created international uproar when it suggested that the human economy would soon exceed the Earth's available resources. Now, 34 years later, the most up-to-date WWF report Europe 2005 - The Ecological Footprint shows that the projected over- plundering has become a reality. In short, the report says that "humanity's annual demand for resources is now exceeding the Earth's regenerative capacity by more tha
  • Feature: Solutions for sludge

    A research project into the recyclability and reuse opportunities of paper mill sludge has just been launched at Aylesford Newsprint's Kent plant. Funded by the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) and using state-of-the-art technology developed in Canada, the six-month project to assess the economic viability of processing paper mill sludge into usable materials came on-stream in earlier this month. Paper mill sludge is the main waste product from the manufacture of white recy
  • Feature: WRAP examines alternate course

    Recycling officers might want to take a deep breath before breaking the news to residents that their local authority is considering implementing an alternate week collection (AWC), but around 100 local authorities are now operating an AWC is some form. In fact, 11 of the top 20 performers in 2003-04 operated an AWC scheme, and last month the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) produced an extensive report on how to evaluate whether such an approach is right for an authority. W
  • Government deflates tyre industry effort

    Industry efforts to stamp out illegal dumping of scrap tyres could be undermined by the Government's failure to monitor tyre disposal activities, warns the British Rubber Manufacturers' Association (BRMA). According to the BRMA, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) have backtracked on plans to introduce statutory reporting of tyre disposal ahead of a landfill ban on tyres, under the Landfill Directive, on 16 J
  • News analysis: Doorstepping still proves the most effective way of getting residents to recycle more

    Last week, MRW reported the success of a 15-month study led by Rugby Borough Council on the various ways of promoting recycling to residents. To the council officials carrying out the research, the project's results came as no surprise: knocking on people's front door was the best way to get them recycling more. Over the years, this simple face-to-face approach has consistently proven to be the most effective way to boost participation in local authorities' recycl
  • Paper recycling boss to be sentenced for manslaughter in October

    A paper recycling firm's boss who admitted manslaughter following the death of one of his workers has had his sentencing hearing put back until October. MV White's managing director Paul White admitted manslaughter during the hearing at Norwich Crown Court last month. Kevin Arnup, a father of three children, died when he was sucked into a paper shredder at the MV White Ketteringham recycling plant in Norfolk. The victim, who was the foreman of the plant, was k
  • Plasterboard recyclers call on EA to get their act together

    Recyclers from the plasterboard industry have called on the Environment Agency (EA) to get its act together over the material. More than 50 people from all parts of the industry packed into the conference room at The Building Centre, London, on July 26 to discuss how to move plasterboard recycling forward. While every aspect of this waste was discussed in facilitated break-out sessions the key message was about the attitude of the regulator. Mike Watson of the
  • Recycled tyre garden wins prestigious award

    A recycled rubber garden product has helped Cheshire County Council to win 'Best in Show' and a 'Gold Award' at the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Flower Show held at Tatton Park, Cheshire, on July 20-24. The winning garden The county council's garden -- called 'Living Today with Tomorrow in Mind' -- was landscaped with rubber chippi
  • Red Ken wants London to look after its own waste

    London's boroughs could soon be dealing with the vast majority of their waste rather than sending it outside the capital to landfill sites if Ken Livingstone has his way. The Mayor of London has published for consultation a plan to increase the number of recycling facilities in the capital. It calls for an extra 208 recycling plants and over 60 composting facilities in London to process 45% of municipal waste and 70% of business waste. New technologies will al
  • VW advances ELV recycling process

    Volkswagen is building an End-of-Life vehicle treatment plant in Austria, which it claims, will be the first industrially viable operation to maximise the recycling of ELV shredder residue. The German carmaker said it is considering plans to establish similar facilities elsewhere in Europe, including the UK, over the next few years. Under construction in Enns, Austria, its plant will be based on a technology developed jointly by VW and SiCon of Hilchenbach, near Cologne,
  • Wake up call for LATS

    Local authorities in England have yet to wake up to the full implications of the landfill trading allowance system (LATS), believes Glyn Jones, of the Environment Department at the University of York. Many authorities are overly optimistic in their estimates for what they will need each year, while some council officers seem reluctant to trade allowances, said Jones, in a presentation to the recent Tackling Waste 2005 conference at the University of Nottingham. Jones tol
  • WEEE compliance schemes join up

    Waste Electrical Electronic Equipment (WEEE) compliance schemes Repic and B2B Compliance are to work together to help their members comply with the new WEEE directive. Both organisations will offer a business to business as well as business to consumer electrical and electronic waste service to their members. In practice, this means that producers who producers both business to business and business to consumer products will only have to sign up with the compliance schem
  • WRAP up 04/05

    The Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) has helped to generate 1.8 million tonnes of new recycling capacity including a 22% increase in glass reprocessing, the group said in its annual Achievements Report. The report for the 2004/05 financial year identifies a number of significant advances by the resource management company, such as its work on a project to produce food-contact polyethylene from recovered milk containers. WRAP chief executive Jennie Price said:

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