Government announces new circular programme

The government has announced a new circular programme to use fewer new resources, drive up the repair and reuse of existing materials, and increase recycling.

The programme, called ‘Maximising Resources, Minimising Waste’ brings together a range of measures backed by government funding which will help to keep products and materials in circulation for as long as possible and at their highest value, including through increasing reuse, repair and remanufacture, helping to grow the economy and boost employment.

Environment minister Rebecca Pow said the government means “business when it comes to preventing waste.”

“We’re targeting the sectors responsible for the biggest impacts on the environment and working with business to take the right steps for better use of our precious resources,” she added.

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The plans include scrapping fees for households to have bulky domestic furniture collected from their homes by retailers by 2025 and developing fast fashion policies to keep textiles out of landfill and in circulation for longer through reuse and recycling.

Additionally, the programme will ensure vapes are properly disposed of, by consulting the public on changes to the waste electricals regulations, helping make sure the vape industry pay and strengthening take-back requirements for retailers and online sellers.

WRAP CEO Harriet Lamb welcomes the initiative as “increasing repair and reuse is key to supporting the move towards more circular living which many people and community groups are embracing.”

The government will also launch proposals on reforming the batteries regulations 2023, to mitigate the environmental impact of vehicle batteries while also keeping Britain at the forefront of the electric vehicle revolution.

The programme published today builds on other measures to tackle waste and polluting plastics, including the tax on plastic packaging which does not meet a minimum threshold of at least 30% recycled content, which came into force last April, and the upcoming bans on single-use plastic items, including cutlery and plates.

Circular economyMaterials and packagingNewsPolicy

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