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What does a Tory government mean for the waste and resource industry?

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Date posted: 11th May 2015

I think it’s safe to say it was a shock to many of us to hear Conservative leader David Cameron had won the majority vote for the General Election 2015 – would you agree? This means, the lack of Liberal Democrat presence in Westminster will no longer be able to push their green friendly policies on the Conservative’s environmentally sparse manifesto.

As well as Nick Clegg, during the election we saw important environmental representatives, such as former Resource Minister Dan Rogerson and Energy Secretary Ed Davey, pushed out by Conservatives.

From the last blog we wrote on the General Election 2015 (‘RPS on the 2015 election: don’t put your vote to waste’), we already identified the Conservatives as a party which doesn’t really provide improved consideration for the environment other than greener energy.

Cameron’s manifesto mentions little on plans for a circular economy, a zero waste Britain or increasing recycling targets.

Therefore, high profile people from the waste and resource industry are coming together in order to ensure leadership for environmental policies are in place, in the new government.

Commenting on the news, our Environmental Manager Thomas Hudson, said: “Moving forward we’d like to see the EU Circular Economy Package promoted to drive reuse of resources.

“This will help reduce waste, reduce reliance on raw materials and help promote a more environmentally sustainable society . . . like the good old saying suggest, we should ‘make do and mend’!”

In particular, it’s crucial Britain has a leading role in the EU Circular Economy Package consultations, which the European Commission’s Director-General said will take place ‘before summer’. It’s also important to continue pushing for a central Office for Resource Management (ORM).

Speaking about the new government, Ian Hetherington, Director General of the British Metals Recycling Association (BMRA), said: “We hope that the whole topic of waste, reuse, recycling, resource efficiency and the treatment of unrecyclable residues is debated fully in place of the fractured sub-topical monologues that has characterised recent years.”

Adding to this, the Chief Executive of The Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM), Steve Lee said: “We need early and clear decisions regarding government departmental responsibilities and the effective co-ordination of policy to support resource efficiency and green economic growth.

“The next five years must be productive ones, not fallow, in delivering a more resource-efficient UK.”

So to answer the initial question ‘What does a Tory government mean for the waste and resource industry?’ it means a fight, a fight to ensure we protect the waste sector. Let’s make our voice heard by the new government, to ensure our industry is represented.

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