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The Low Carbon Economy Ltd

13 Jan 2011 10:01:15

Recycling 'focusing on quantity rather than quality'

Recycling 'focusing on quantity rather than quality'
The Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) has warned local councils could be focusing on "quantity not quality" in their efforts to drive up recycling rates.

In its 2011 State of the Nation: Waste and Resource Management report, the ICE warns increasingly low-grade material is being produced by recycling efforts as more items are diverted from landfill.

However, the poor quality of this end product means in some cases it has to be sent to landfill.

A multi-million pound drive to enhance the quality of recyclable materials, which would allow them to be re-sold on the market and contribute to the economy, was called for.

Jonathan Davies, a waste and resource management expert at the ICE, said: "In a world driven by carbon reduction and global competition for resources, it is time for the UK waste industry to evolve from a disposal sector into a supply sector that unlocks the real economic value of materials in a low carbon fashion."

The proportion of waste which went to landfill in 2008/09 was 50 percent, compared to 78 percent in 2000/01, according to figures from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.  ADNFCR-1235-ID-800339630-ADNFCR

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