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Local Government Association to focus on reuse

Plans to set up a new commission to promote a ‘thriving market’ in reuse have been given the go-ahead by the Local Government Association (LGA).

The LGA board approved the creation of a Reuse Commission to ‘lead the way’ in developing reuse policy and practice between local authorities, government and charities.

It will develop a set of good practice models for local authorities to increase reuse and set out case studies showing how councils are working with the voluntary sector and businesses.

The commission will start up this month and issue an initial report early in 2014.

The LGA said diverting material from disposal can save local authorities money and increase in economic activity because reused materials can be traded at a higher rate than as waste materials.

An environment and housing board report, seen by MRW, said: ‘There are economic and social as well as environmental benefits to increasing the amount of material that is re-used.

‘A thriving market in second hand products can bring additional jobs per tonne of material when compared to disposal, including activity by many voluntary and community sector groups.

‘Reuse can also reduce environmental impacts in material production, distribution and disposal by giving products a second or extended life and thereby reducing the need for the production of new products.’

The LGA estimates around 149,000 tonnes of waste electronic and electrical equipment (WEEE), 165,000 tonnes of furniture and the majority of 1.4 million tonnes of textiles could potentially be saved from landfill or incineration each year.

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