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Environment Agency launches material status tool

A tool to help businesses assess the status of waste or surplus materials has been launched by the Environment Agency (EA) and other organisations in the resource sector.

‘IsItWaste’ indicates whether material achieves End-of-Waste status and can be considered as a product.

The aim is to remove high quality waste-derived products from the scope of waste legislation to improve end market demand and confidence and allow businesses to be more resource efficient and competitive.

Resource minister Dan Rogerson said: “I congratulate the EA and their partners on the new service which can help businesses save money and create new products from existing materials to generate growth and new jobs.”

The web-based tool assesses key stages such as material composition, risk, product use and end markets. It is part of the EU LIFE+ funded EQual (Ensuring Quality of waste-derived products) programme, which aims to support and promote the reuse and recycling of waste materials whilst protecting human health and the environment.

The programme partners are the EA, the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM), the Environmental Services Association, the Northern Ireland Environment Agency, the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure & the Environment, the Organics Recycling Group, and Energy UK.

“Deriving value from waste materials by turning them back into safe, high quality products is an essential element in the move towards a more circular economy,” said Steve Lee, chief executive at CIWM. “Offering both economic and environmental benefits if supported and regulated appropriately, waste-derived products improve business resource efficiency and competitiveness, reduce reliance on landfill, and help to conserve virgin raw materials.”

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