News in Brief - 22 February 2013

1. DECC appoints Electricity Market Reform Panel

The Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has announced the members selected to sit on the first Electricity Market Reform Panel of Technical Experts.

The panel, set to ‘provide independent scrutiny of the analysis which will inform the government’s first Electricity Market Reform Delivery Plan’, will comprise four members: forensic expert, Dr Norma Wood (Chair); electricity advisor, Andris Banksovskis; economist, Dr Guy Doyle; and electricity researcher and economics professor, Professor David Newbery.

Secretary of State, Edward Davey, said: “The experts that we have on this panel will help us to ensure the analysis that informs the EMR delivery plan is as robust as possible, allowing us to achieve our ambitions and ensure value-for-money for taxpayers”.

Also announced was the appointment of former Head of Advisory Risk Management for KPMG Europe LLP, Robert Spedding, to Chair of the Coal Authority.

2. Director and CEO of Sims steps down

From June, Daniel Dienst will retire as Executive Director and Group Chief Executive Officer of metal and electronics recycler, Sims, after it reported a first half loss of AUS$295.5 million for 2013.

Though the losses are an improvement on last year’s (AUS$633.2 million), operating revenue was down 25 per cent to AUS$3.4 billion. Total scrap intake was also down 18 per cent in the six months to 31 December (6 million tonnes), with total shipments down 17 per cent (5.9 million).

Compounding the losses was that the firm’s UK branch had reported an ‘inventory write-down adjustment’ of around AUS$79 million (£53m), a development linked to fraud.

3. New sludge screen unit for Billy Bowie Ltd.

Sludge Screen

CDEnviro has announced that they are to supply Scottish waste management company, Billy Bowie Special Projects Ltd., with a second MSU:10 portable sludge screen unit.

The unit, which allows for the separation of solid and liquid wastes on site, will reportedly improve the ‘operational flexibility’ of the company, allowing them to extend their liquid waste services for water utilities, local authorities and industrial clients.

CDEnviro General Manager, Matt Bunting commented: “We’re pleased that Billy Bowie returned to purchase from us based on their experience of the CDEnviro system and we’re pleased to provide them with the solution to their plant requirements.”

4. Recycling initiative kits for Kilbride footballers

Twenty-two young football players in East Kilbride Football Club (EKFC) have received new football kits from recycling programme Every Can Counts in recognition of their recycling efforts.

The team, made up of 10 and 11 year olds, partnered with Glasgow-based recycling company Can Do Recycling, to collect as many drink cans for recycling as possible.

The challenge saw 40 local businesses getting involved and over 200 bags of cans collected, contributing towards a total of £1,300.

EKFC’s Club Chairman, Mike Peden, said: “Everyone has really got into the spirit of the fundraising campaign. It’s equipping young people with great teamwork skills as well as an understanding about the importance of recycling.”

Every Can Counts Programme Manager, Andrew McFarlan, added: “In Scotland alone, around 252 million drink cans are consumed every year. The EKFC have proved that with teamwork and enthusiasm we can all help to make Scotland a zero waste society.”

5. New Welsh contract for Biffa


(L-R) Rachel Jowitt, Waste Strategy & Resources Manager and Biffa's National PSI Manager-Recycling Steve Oulds at Monmouth County Council’s One Planet Centre at Llanfoist

Biffa has signed a deal with Monmouthshire County Council that will see the waste management company recycle the 8,000 tonnes of recyclates produced in the county each year.

Material collected at the council’s two transfer stations will be sorted and recycled at Biffa’s 300,000 tonne materials recovery facility (MRF) in Aldridge, West Midlands.

Monmouthshire County Council’s Waste Strategy and Resources Manager, Rachel Jowitt, said: ““Our residents do a great job supporting the scheme and we currently have a an overall recycling and composting rate of 57 per cent but it is important that we manage the materials we collect efficiently.“

6. WRAP launches ‘free communications materials’


WRAP has today (22 February) launched a set of ‘free communications materials’ - such as posters, leaflets and web banners – for use by local authorities and reuse organisations to promote the message of reuse. The communications are intended to encourage more people to put bulky items (electricals and furniture) out for collection, diverting waste from landfill.

According to a report by WRAP, trials for the communication campaign involved ‘a mix of local authorities, third sector organisations and commercial companies’ and resulted in five of the six projects seeing an increase in material collection as a direct result of the communications.

Director of trial organisation Revive Leeds, Frances Jones, said: "Revive Leeds is delighted with the communications materials that have been provided by WRAP.  The footfall and sales at our reuse shop on the council's Household Waste site have increased over 100 per cent in comparison with the same months last year.”

Head of Collections and Quality at WRAP, Linda Crichton, said: “The free communications materials that WRAP has published today have been thoroughly tested with householders in ‘real life’ trials, and are now proven to make an impact and change behaviour.”