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Circular economy could create 6,000 textile recycling jobs

Minimising the amount of good quality clothing going to landfill and incineration could create up to 6,000 jobs, according to a leading figure in the textiles recycling industry.

Alan Wheeler, director of the Textile Recycling Association, has spelled out the potential benefits for the sector after analysis by WRAP and environmental think tank Green Alliance found that improving resource efficiency in the UK could create some 54,000 additional jobs by 2030 as well as bringing wider benefits to the labour market.

He said around 3,000 sorting jobs could be created if the majority of high quality clothing being disposed of is retained.

Another 2-3,000 jobs could be created for van, lorry and forklift truck drivers, machine operatives, office support and management staff.

Wheeler added that many textile collectors and recyclers are situated in areas of high unemployment and many of the new jobs would suite low-skilled workers, meaning there should be an abundance of available labour.

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