Defra calls on councils to help SMEs recycle

24th October 2011

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  • Local government ,
  • Supply chain ,
  • EMS ,
  • Recycling ,
  • Minimisation



Local authorities are being urged to help make recycling easier for small businesses by signing up to a new voluntary commitment designed by Defra and the Federation for Small Businesses (FSB)

The new Business Waste and Recycling Services Commitment outlines 12 best practice principles, including providing clear information on recycling services and guidance on companies’ waste management responsibilities.

Under the new charter, local authorities can sign up to any or all of the principles which focus tailoring services to businesses, providing value for money and listening to firms’ needs.

Those signing up to all the principles pledge to provide information on what happens to firms’ waste and recycling. Under the scheme, businesses will be able use household waste recycling centres if possible. A council will also provide details of other providers that can deal with any waste it doesn’t collect.

According to the FSB, 95% of companies would recycle more if they had better access to recycling facilities. Meanwhile, Defra estimates that better waste management could save UK businesses £18 billion each year.

“We are pleased that Defra has launched this commitment to encourage local authorities to work with SMEs,” says David Caro, chair of the FSB environment committee. “We now call on all local authorities to sign up to it.”

In announcing the new charter, recycling minister Lord Taylor said: “For the first time we’ve got solid agreement between councils and businesses to make it easier and more cost effective for smaller firms to recycle more and improve their resource efficiency.”

The new commitment forms part of government’s pledge to help improve small businesses’ access to recycling outlined in its review of waste policy published in June.

WRAP, which will be managing the initiative, argues the charter help local authorities to build on their existing service commitments and promote what they offer to businesses.

Local authorities interested in signing up to the commitment can find out more information from WRAP’s website.


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