News in Brief

20 May 2008

Dr Julian Parfitt joins Resource Futures

Environmental consultancy Resource Futures has appointed waste management expert Dr Julian Parfitt as its research and technical director.

Dr Parfitt was previously employed at the Waste & Resources Action Programme between 2002 and 2007 as its principal analyst, before spending the past year as head of research at ECT. He is also a member of Defra's Waste & Resources Advisory Group.

In a statement Resource Futures said: "He has a particular interest in applied research and will be a valuable asset in bringing in additional research capability to the range of practical and technical advice and consultancy services offered by the company."

Veolia staff back bra reuse campaign

Some of Veolia's Sheffield-based staff who are backing the Bag It Up campaignEmployees at Veolia Environmental Services' Sheffield headquarters have given their support to a campaign that aims to collect unwanted bras and sell them overseas.

The Bag It Up initiative hopes to raise at least £10,000 for Yorkshire Air Ambulance by collecting second-hand bras and selling them in markets such as West Africa, where they are in strong demand.

Judith Turner, director of waste collection and recycling at Veolia's Sheffield offices, said: "I initiated this campaign because Veolia is always delighted to pledge its support in raising awareness of charities. Collecting the bras not only supports our ‘reduce, reuse, recycle' ethos but helps those less fortunate than ourselves. Bra-vo to all the Veolia ladies who helped out!"

Highland retailers invited to discuss recycling

The Highland council has written to major supermarkets in the region, asking them to enter into dialogue with the authority about their approach to recycling.

Councillor Drew Hendry, chair of the council's Climate Change Working Group, has asked retailers to specifically comment on the recycling facilities they offer at their stores and the efforts they are making to reduce packaging waste.

His letter states: "The Highland Council aims to demonstrate leadership and ambition in relation to climate change reflecting its role as a manager of its own estate; an employer; a service provider; a community leader and a signatory to the Scottish Climate Change Declaration."

Chelsea show to use compostable carriers

One of the compostable bags that will be handed out at this year's Chelsea Flower ShowThe Royal Horticultural Society has announced that it will be using fully compostable carrier bags instead of the plastic bags it has used in the past at this year's Chelsea Flower Show.

Up to 350,000 bags, that are made from non-food grade cornstarch and supplied by Shropshire-based company Ecosac, will be given out over to visitors the course of the five day event that takes place in London later this week.

Ecosac director Frazer Walker commented: "In the 5 years of our company supplying compostable products to organisations large and small, this is an exciting, high-profile venture and a milestone not only for us but for the promotion of environmentally friendly packaging in the UK as a whole."


SITA reveal strange attempts at recycling

SITA UK has revealed a range of the items that members of the public have left at their household waste recycling centres across the north of England in recent years.

The items include everything from kittens to a bomb, as well as credit cards, bundles of cash, a wedding dress and a dynamo from a World War Two Wellington bomber.

Phil Holland, Regional General Manager for the company's North-West operations, said: "There's nothing as queer as folk when it comes to strange things happening with their recycling. We have seen it all and nowadays it would take something really amazing to surprise us. Naturally we are keen for people to recycle anything that they think can be reused, but sometimes they get carried away by their enthusiasm or carelessness."