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Reuse needs boost, says CIWM

The Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM) has urged more effective communication on the benefits of reuse.

In its Reuse in the UK and Ireland – a ‘State of the Nations Report’, the organisation calls for more collaboration to maximise the impact of existing communications campaigns.

It says that while the business case for reuse includes environmental, economic and social benefits, it is rarely articulated effectively and a communications action plan should be developed after an assessment of current engagement activities.

Reuse policy should be developed in line with the EU’s circular economy proposals, it adds, with the possibility of product targets and integration with Extended Producer Responsibility laws.

Other recommendations include improved data, support packages for reuse organisations and the establishment of a group to develop the report’s suggestions.

Margaret Bates

2000 margaret bates CIWM

In her inaugural speech as CIWM president, Professor Margaret Bates (pictured) said she would explore how the CIWM could act as a focal point for some of the report’s recommendations.

“This is a relatively neglected area of waste policy and yet one which has so much to offer both in practical terms and as a vehicle to raise wider awareness about waste prevention – a difficult message to get across in today’s consumption-driven society,” she said.

Report co-author Dr Jane Beasley said: “Evidence showed a very resilient sector which thrives on the commitment of individuals.

“Through their hard work and tenacity, the wider benefits of reuse, which extend way beyond the diversion of materials for a second life, are being realised and lives are being changed.

“We have an obligation as a collective industry to support the progress of this sector and maximise the opportunities that reuse can bring.”

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