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Resource efficiency 'key to growth'

WRAP’s chief executive has reasserted the role of resource efficiency in delivering economic growth and environmental benefits to the UK.

Speaking at the organisation’s annual conference in London, Liz Goodwin said resource efficiency and security were critical to the UK’s economic competitiveness and resilience.

“In a recent survey 80% of CEOs of manufacturing companies said raw material shortage was a risk to their business. A 147% surge in real commodity prices since 2000, and the uncertainty being caused by historically high levels of price volatility are hampering investment and economic growth,” she added.

“All this is at the very heart of WRAP thinking, as is the concept of the closed loop, or circular economy which, I firmly believe can contribute to stimulating economic growth.

Goodwin said WRAP was involved in discussions with all government funders about support UK governments to deliver their agendas.

“We have a unique role to play in delivering the resource efficiency agenda – our experience, skill and cross-sector perspective, along with our ability to act as a bridge between the public and private sectors all mean we can act as a catalyst and driver of change.”

WRAP’s work, said Goodwin, had resulted in savings of £18 for every £1 spent, a substantial increase in the UK’s reprocessing capacity of almost 50 million tonnes, and a reduction in material sent to landfill. It had also, she said, helped deliver £1bn landfill tax savings for councils and businesses.

Other keynote speeches were due from Defra resource management minister Lord de Mauley; Marks and Spencer’s head of sustainable business Mike Barry, and Green Alliance director Matthew Spencer.

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