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Commercial Recycling

Volume 447: debated on Tuesday 20 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) whether he plans to extend his Department’s grants to cover commercial recycling; (76776)

(2) what mechanisms he plans to help small and medium-sized businesses recycle their waste products.

The recent consultation on the review of England’s Waste Strategy puts forward proposals for a greater emphasis on the recycling of commercial and industrial waste. This includes a wider role for local authorities in fostering better recycling services for small businesses, better integration of municipal and business waste management, and the further development of markets for recycled materials. The consultation also asked for views on how best the Government can support small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) in overcoming the barriers they face in recycling their waste.

Responses to the consultation, which closed on 9 May 2006, are being carefully considered during the development of a revised waste strategy—due to be published later this year.

In addition, the recently created Waste Infrastructure Development Programme is considering how to encourage local authorities to allow for appropriate, larger facilities that can serve the non-municipal sector.

The Business Resource Efficiency and Waste (BREW) Programme also plays a key role in reducing the amount of commercial waste sent to landfill—returning £284 million to businesses over three years through resource efficiency and waste minimisation programmes.

The Waste and Resource Action Programme (WRAP) has set up a pilot project providing sector-specific help for small businesses, and the Environment Agency (EA) is developing a pilot internet service called ‘What do I do with my waste?’. This will work as an extension to the EA’s existing guidance service for SMEs, ‘NetRegs’, which includes guidance on waste issues.