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Directive requires high quality recycling

High quality recycling provisions have been included in revisions to the waste framework directive.

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs waste regulation policy manager John MacIntyre at the East Meets Waste conference in Cambridge demonstrated what the revisions may require and how the UK intends to interpret it.

He showed the key amendment that states:

"Members States shall take measures to promote high quality recycling and to this end they shall set up separate collection of waste where technically, environmentally and economically practicable and appropriate to meet the necessary quality standards for the relevant recycling sectors.

"Subject to Article (10), by 2015 separate collection shall be set up for at least the following: paper, metal, plastic and glass."

However, he revealed that the UK Government would interpret this to mean that it would encourage separate collection of these materials if possible, but would allow some commingled collection.

He showed the UK's current wording of its interpretation of this measure:

"The UK intends to encourage the separate collection of wastes where this is technically, environmentally and economically practicable, while allowing the commingled collection of paper, metal, plastic and glass and other recyclable materials for subsequent separation in material recycling facilities to continue after 2015 where this is the most effective means of increasing recycling rates in the local circumstances."

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