Defra’s ambitious 25-year plan to save the planet was launched last year (AMDEA attended the event). Essentially Defra want to move the UK towards a more circular economy (just like the rest of the EU).
They have several proposals for how to do this. However, unlike the EU’s Circular Economy package, Defra’s proposals seem to concentrate more on reducing waste than considering new products. Though they are of course currently still looking at this aspect within the context of material efficiency under the Ecodesign Regulations.
Defra’s initiatives on waste include increasing the costs paid by producers for the disposal of packaging; introducing a chemicals strategy; using Ecodesign to encourage more resource-efficient product design; and introducing a tax on unrecyclable plastic packaging.
They are also looking at how to persuade consumers to buy more sustainable products and avoid plastic.
AMDEA is concerned about Defra’s ambition to support the market for reuse and remanufacture of electrical and electronic equipment. Readers of this newsletter will be well aware of the importance AMDEA places on providing safety for consumers. When organisations take unwanted products for repair or refurbishment before re-supplying them to consumers, the care they take and the components they use have a direct impact on the safety of those products. AMDEA continues to emphasise this in our work on standards in this area.
We are also unhappy about the suggestion of requiring separate collection of food waste as part of a more harmonised approach to household waste collection. As our Food Waste Disposer campaign continues to reiterate, kerbside collection is not the answer.