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New group eyes improvement in UK materials security

A network to bring together experts across the materials security sector to tackle barriers to resource efficiency will be launched in September by a UK innovation agency.

The Materials Security Special Interest Group, created by the Technology Strategy Board, is expected to become a place for dialogue among designers, chemists, materials scientists, engineers, product developers and recycling and waste experts.

New business models and the rapid formation of new supply chains are expected to deliver solutions to materials security challenges in the UK.

John Whittall, lead technologist for environmental sustainability at the board said materials security was “emphatically a business opportunity”.

He said: “Key strategies to reduce dependency on critical materials will be through new technology and business models based on the 4 Rs – reduce, reuse, recycle and replace.

The launch event, taking place on 19 September in London, will discuss plans to: define ways in which UK companies can mitigate materials security risks; support collaborative projects across UK supply chains; and develop a a coherent voice on material security issues to inform policy.

Earlier, a £4.5m fund for R&D to encourage industrial end-users to create new products and services across the supply chain was announced.

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