DEFRA’s zero-waste plans lack ambition

The Environment Department (DEFRA) has named six areas to implement plans to become the first "zero-waste places" in the UK. But the plans’ details reveal varying levels of ambition.

In last year’s waste strategy, DEFRA announced its desire to develop zero-waste places (ENDS Report 389, pp 34-38 ). It wants them to be exemplars of waste management and show "innovative and replicable" waste prevention initiatives. Yet in some cases, the plans do not mention how they will stimulate waste prevention and merely focus on encouraging recycling.

Among the proposals to be supported are:

  • Brent: Twenty "green zones" will be set up across the borough by September 2009. These feature a resident encouraging others to recycle. The intention is to get 65% of houses within each zone recycling at least five materials and using energy-efficient light bulbs. The zones will also be used to encourage households to use water-saving devices and "sustainable transport".
  • Milton Keynes: The initiative will target 1,500 homes, two schools and high street businesses. Each household will get a "zero-waste visit" to show them how to cut waste, while businesses and schools will be given a waste audit and advice.
  • Norfolk: Kings Lynn’s Tuesday Market will be targeted to "achieve zero waste as far as possible". But the details of the project indicate it just intends to run recycling collections of paper, board and vegetable waste.
  • Lewisham: The borough will run an "eco street initiative" where 100 properties will be targeted with specialist advice and support to prevent waste. This will include audits, a free compost bin and community events.
  • Peterborough: This initiative will focus on 200 retailers, offices and council buildings in the city centre. Waste champions will be recruited in each participating firm to encourage recycling and waste prevention. Firms will also be given best practice advice, with some receiving one-to-one support to encourage reuse of electronic equipment and furniture.
  • West Midlands: A "zero-waste region" initiative will be rolled out. It intends to divert 300,000 tonnes of commercial and industrial waste from landfill by 2012/13 by targeting businesses and organisations that produce large quantities of waste.

  • Related Environmental Services

    Powered by ENDS Directory

    Compliance Search

    Discover all ENDS content in one place, including legislation summaries to keep up to date with compliance deadlines

    Compliance Deadlines

    Plan ahead with our Calendar feature highlighting upcoming compliance deadlines

    News from ENDS Europe

    News from ENDS Waste & Bioenergy