News in brief 03/02/17

ACR+ changes name to reflect evolving resource approach

The Association of Cities and Regions for Recycling and sustainable Resource management (ACR+) has announced that, to better reflect its priorities, it has changed its name to the Association of Cities and Regions for sustainable Resource management.

News in brief 03/02/17
Having dropped the ‘recycling’ from its name, the group, which represents over 90 members and works to support cities and regions create a more sustainable future, will still be known as ACR+.

Created in 1994 as the Association of Cities for Recycling, it added the focus on sustainable resource management, and upped its scope to include regions in 2005. Since then, the group says that the move from a linear resource economy to a circular one has changed the way people approach resources, and thus it has decided to highlight even more that resource efficiency will require, in addition to recycling, the promotion of waste prevention actions, reuse and repair initiatives, the support of ecodesign, the implementation of legal and economic instruments, and many other measures at different levels.

Following the announcement, ACR+ Secretary General Françoise Bonnet said: “With this slight change, ACR+ just wants to emphasise what it has been advocating since its creation: the first levels of the waste hierarchy, especially prevention should be at the centre of material resource strategies. In the current context, local and regional authorities are key actors in the shift towards more resource efficiency. They have the capacity to boost new economic models with less resource wastage while safeguarding human well-being.”

More information about ACR+ can be found on the network’s website.

Veolia launches London fund for projects addressing waste and resources

Veolia London has launched its £50,000 Recycling Fund for Communities, a new community fund for 2017 designed to support grassroots projects inspiring people to think differently about waste and resources.

The fund can provide a cash boost of up to £1,000 for equipment, materials and even volunteers to help get projects off the ground. It is aimed at the kind of small projects that inspire people to do the right thing with their waste, make use of recycled or reused materials and/or help protect the local environment.

Groups, which are encouraged to apply by 30 April, can upload their project on community crowdsourcing website Spacehive, and promote their project to get support from the fund.

Elsie Grace, Project Manager for Veolia London, said: “We want people to think about materials and waste and if they do that, they could get a boost from us. So whether it’s promoting recycling as part of an event, using recycled or reused materials as part of a project or running something like a swap shop that gets the whole community involved in, we are keen to hear about it.”

Suzy Gregory, Co Deputy Head of John Ruskin Primary School in Southwark, which secured Veolia’s support to develop a wildlife garden at the school, added: “Through the garden, the children are learning about the environment around them and how we can protect it. They also get to see processes such as composting that take waste materials and turn them into something useful again.”

More information about Veolia’s Recycling Fund for Communities can be found on the Spacehive website.

Associated Waste Management unveils new MRF as part of expansion

Leeds-based Associated Waste Management (AWM) is to officially open its new 200,000 square foot materials recovery facility (MRF) in Stourton on 14 February.

News in brief 03/02/17
The new facility, to be opened by the Rt Hon Hilary Benn MP, has been licensed to process 250,000 tonnes of material per year, giving AWM a total of 875,000 tonnes of permitted waste and recycling activities annually.

AWM buys, processes and recycles paper, plastic, metals, wood, textiles, bricks and rubble, glass, food and organic fractions, using any non-recyclable items for energy recovery. In 2015, the company produced 180,000 tonnes of refuse-derived fuel.

AWM’s engineering partner, Eggersmann from Germany, has supplied and installed the new plant, of which AWM have invested a total of £10m, with an additional £5 million in recycling equipment and £2.5 mllion in collection vehicles for both trade and skip waste.

The company says the depot, which was purchased in July 2016, will create a further 40 jobs, and will include the refurbishment of the site over the first four-year term of the 20-year lease. AWM has a turnover of £48 million and employs in excess of 270 full time staff.

Commenting on the expansion, Tim Shapcott, Commercial Director at AWM, said: “The Stourton facility acquisition is the result of a number of significant contract awards for AWM over the past 24 months, culminating in the need for greater levels of innovation and processing capacity. It is a key element of our continued expansion plans, so we are very pleased that it has been successfully completed.”

More information about Associated Waste Management can be found at the company’s website.