With news on: Welsh minister highlights DRS consultation; Viridor and Forest Holidays strike waste deal; Zero Waste Scotland launches food scheme; ‘Global action’ required to solve e-waste challenge
Welsh minister highlights DRS consultation
Wales’ deputy minister for housing and local government, Hannah Blythyn, visited a primary school to highlight the ongoing consultation on the introduction of a Deposit Return Scheme for drinks containers.
The visit to Darren Park Primary School took place yesterday (April 3), during which the deputy minister encouraged participation in the consultation which is currently ongoing.
It asks whether consumers would be happy to pay more for a drink and have the extra money refunded when they take the container back to a shop for recycling or whether they would prefer to continue with the current system of putting containers out for councils to collect.
Hannah Blythyn said: “It has been an absolute pleasure to visit Darren Park Primary School today and to talk to the pupils about plastic use and the pros and cons of a deposit return scheme. They have all been very engaged in the discussion and have come up with some excellent ideas of how we can reduce our plastic waste and encourage more people to recycle”.
Viridor and Forest Holidays strike waste deal
Viridor and Forest Holidays have agreed a nationwide waste management contract across the company’s 10 holiday locations.
The two-year contract, which begins this month, includes management of waste at locations from Deerpark in Cornwall to Strathyre in Scotland, and will also focus on behavioural change and an “effective means of diverting a wide range of items from landfill”, the companies have said.
Forest Holidays accommodation features 587 cabins in woodland settings with their own kitchen and access to a small café and shop and the waste management contract has been specifically designed to reflect this.
Commenting on the deal, Tania Bowler, Viridor’s commercial manager, said: “We are pleased to be awarded this contract, it is clear Forest Holidays take their ambitions to be as sustainable as possible very seriously.”
Zero Waste Scotland launches food scheme
A ‘first of its kind’ pilot project has been launched by Zero Waste Scotland to provide dedicated food waste reduction support across Dundee, Angus and Fife.
The two-year scheme launched last month will see a regional food waste officer working with small and micro businesses, schools, colleges, universities and community groups across the three areas.
The move comes as part of efforts to meet the Scottish government’s goal of reducing food waste by 33% by 2025.
Iain Clunie, food and drink spokesperson at Zero Waste Scotland said, “Wasted food is not only a waste of money, it’s also a major contributor to climate change. That’s because when we waste food, we also waste all the energy and resources that went into producing it and getting it to our table. On top of this, if food waste then ends up in landfill, it will generate even more emissions in the form of methane gas.”
The government funded organisation added that the project has been designed to place Dundee, Fife and Angus at the forefront of the nation’s food waste revolution.
‘Global action’ required to solve e-waste challenge
Research by an international team of academics has highlighted the “urgent need for global cooperation” to prevent environmental and human harm from WEEE.
The comments come following the publication of research led by Professor Lenny Koh from the University of Sheffield with a team of researchers from the USA and China.
The authors of the paper said that the aim of the work is to “transform today’s rudimentary recycling practices so that they become “advanced, safe, and a profitable part of the global circular economy” – pointing to the export of WEEE to areas where recycling practices may be ‘unsafe’.
It highlighted standards in the e-waste industry which need to be improved, and added that profit margins for recyclers can be “so small that they resort to using unsafe and environmentally damaging practices to meet demand”.
The researchers flagged the need for oversight from governmental agencies to advance e-waste collection and strengthen recycling infrastructure.
Professor Koh said: “Accessible best available technologies, sustainable standards for e-waste recycling, and financial incentives will pave the way forward for global actions in solving the e-waste challenge.”