FCC Environment has published an assessment of how the political climate in the UK and in Europe may affect the waste and recycling industry in the next five years.
‘Mapping the politics of waste’ summarises the positions of the UK’s main political parties on waste matters, including recycling targets, the circular economy and investments in infrastructure.
The document also examines what would be the impact of further devolution in Scotland, of a possible exit of the UK from the European Union and of the formation of another hung parliament after the May 2015 election.
The initiative aims at encouraging debate around waste and recycling policies, according to Kristian Dales, sales and marketing director at FCC.
“What the document is setting out is how inconsistent [waste policy] is and the [need] for industry to lead Government where it needs to go,” he told MRW.
The report, however, does not include any formal policy proposals for the next legislature.
“We are not asking for more regulations, but for more consistency in where we are and more enforcement of the existing legislation.”
Paul Taylor, FCC chief executive, said the industry needed consistency over legislative and economic drivers to encourage investment in infrastructure and market growth.
“It’s the responsibility of the waste management and resource sector to work with the existing framework of regulations to drive up recycling and energy recovery rates. However, too much regulation of the industry will stifle competition and damage the long-term viability of the sector,” he said.
Another coalition? The implications for waste
A Conservative-led coalition would likely result in further cuts to public spending, which would affect local authority waste services. Mandatory weekly bin collections for households could also be introduced.
A Labour-led coalition would likely result in the resource security agenda prioritised as a policy area and a stronger business case made for waste. This could see further involvement of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.