Kent Waste Partnership has changed its name to the Kent Resource Partnership (KRP) with its leaders saying it signifies a deliberate move from managing waste.
The name change was announced at the organisation’s annual conference in Canterbury by chairman Cllr Paul Barrington-King.
“This change in name to the KRP signals our clear intent to recover value from 95% of discarded household resources by 2020, whilst ensuring recycling and composting remains our number one treatment option,” he said. “The use of landfill in Kent has reduced remarkably since 2005 and that journey will continue following our refresh of the KRP’s strategic direction up to 2020’.
Barrington-King also told the conference say that Kent’s goal was to become an ‘advanced resource partnership’ (ARP), with KRP working closely with public and private sector organisations.
He added: “The focus on the word ‘advanced’ means councils and businesses should question whether a third or more of valuable resources going to landfill is acceptable in this day and age.
“KRP believes ARPs should have an overall of 80% recycling and recovery as a minimum, and ideally as close to zero untreated waste to landfill as possible – if they wish to be called ‘advanced’.”
A statement from representatives of the 13 local authority leaders on the KRP said: “The name change must have resonance right across our strategic thinking, our contracts with the private sector, how we work between the 13 councils, and our relationships with partner sectors.
“As was clearly outlined in the recent LGA Wealth from Waste report, local government can produce, and does produce, examples of excellence. We believe our industry as a whole is well placed to deliver economic growth, and we believe there’s a desire among many to do it.
“Our joint belief is the oft-spoken phrase ‘waste as a resource’ must go beyond an interesting philosophical national debate to being a state of mind, and organisational culture, that guides strategic decisions, our services, and measures of our success.”
The name-change prompted positive comments from several quarters.
Matthew Farrow, director of the ESA, said: “Kent’s councils have a strong record of partnership working between themselves and with ESA’s membership. We look forward to developing stronger public and private sector working towards achieving the KRP’s strategy up to 2020.”
Andy Doran, chair of the Resource Association noted the KRP was a founder member of the RA and an early signatory to the End Destinations of Recyclates Charter. “This latest announcement is a natural development and I’m delighted councillors have taken this large step forward,” he said.
Jane Bickerstaffe, director of the Industry Council for Packaging & the Environment, said: ‘Our projects with the KRP on packaging issues have given my members confidence of what can be achieved when the private and public sectors work well together”.