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Waste minimisation incentive scheme could launch in UK

Recycling incentive scheme Recyclebank could be set to launch waste minimisation incentive schemes in the UK, following the launch of a similar scheme in Philadelphia, USA.

Speaking to MRW editor Paul Sanderson as part of the Big Interview Live at yesterday’s RWM show, managing director of Recyclebank UK, Sue Igoe said that waste minimisation incentive schemes could be something that Recyclebank would look to launch in the UK as soon as there is interest.

The scheme in Philadelphia was launched in August and according to Igoe, it has been well received by residents.

She said: “As soon as we have partners here in the UK who want to implement the waste minimisation schemes, then you will start to see them here.”

Joining Igoe for the interview was Veolia Environmental Services deputy director Paul Levett, who spoke about the success of the partnership between Veolia and Recyclebank in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead.

Levett said that when pitching to local authorities for new contracts, Veolia would always mention its partnership with Recyclebank, given how well the scheme has gone down in Windsor & Maidenhead.

Both Igoe and Levett were quick to counter previous criticism levelled against Recyclebank for encouraging people to generate more waste in order to gain more incentives.

“It actually makes people more aware of their consumption,” said Levett. “Also the cap on the number of points that can be earned is a good deterrent for stopping people cheating the system.”

Igoe added: “When you look at the reward scheme we are engaging the residents and getting them to think about their actions.”

Incentive schemes have been cited by the new coalition government as the favoured method for driving up recycling rates in the UK and Igoe said she was grateful to the UK government for the level of support it has given to incentives. However, Levett was keen to point out that he doesn’t believe incentive schemes are exclusively favoured by this government.

He said: “I don’t think this will be a party political issue going forward. Once people understand the scheme it will be accepted right across government and not just by the current administration.”

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