29 October 2014 by Will Date

Lochhead announces ‘brokerage service’ for recycled materials

Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead speaking today at the Scottish Resources Conference in Glasgow

Richard Lochhead MSP speaking at the Scottish Resources Conference in Glasgow

Scotland’s Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead has revealed that councils north of the border will be given access to a ‘brokerage service’ which will provide a marketplace for the sale of recyclable materials.

Mr Lochhead revealed details of the brokerage service during his address at the Scottish Resources Conference in Glasgow this morning (October 29).

He claimed that the brokerage would provide ‘certainty of demand’ for local authorities looking to sell recyclable material into the reprocessing sector, as well as allowing them to garner better prices for their recyclate.

The minister added that the scheme would give reprocessors easier access to better quality material. It is expected to launch from January 2015.

Demand

During his address, Mr Lochhead, said: “Our Materials Brokerage Service – the first of its kind in the UK – will see supply and demand for high value recycling matched up, providing certainty of supply for investors and certainty of demand for local authorities.

"Our Materials Brokerage Service – the first of its kind in the UK – will see supply and demand for high value recycling matched up, providing certainty of supply for investors and certainty of demand for local authorities."

- Richard Lochhead
Scottish Environment Secretary

“Scotland’s public sector handles almost 3 million tonnes of waste materials per year. We need to ensure these materials get to the right place and the Brokerage Service will enable the resources collected by councils to be channelled into higher value use, while providing a good deal for the public sector and improving our recycling rates.”

Few details of the service have yet been revealed, but it is understood that Zero Waste Scotland has been in discussion with the public and private sectors over the brokerage for some weeks.

Reuse

Mr Lochhead also announced that the Scottish Government is to provide £1.3 million in funding for a remanufacturing research centre – to be based at the University of Strathclyde – which will seek to develop opportunities in the reuse market.

The minister added: “The Scottish Government is serious about creating a greener, more circular economy, where our valuable products and materials remain in useful circulation for longer, creating and sustaining jobs in the process.

“The challenge is to re-design products to make it easier to take them apart and remanufacture them into new products, and harness their true value. We need Scotland’s brightest and best minds to be focussed on achieving this more circular use of valuable products and materials and that is what the new Scottish Institute of Remanufacture will do.”

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