Consumers, businesses and councils are urged to give their views on a plan to cut waste thrown away, save money and protect the environment.
A consultation opens today on a new Waste Prevention Programme for England which aims to help businesses and householders recognise the savings they can make by cutting waste and passing on items they no longer use.
It also shows that preventing waste from being produced in the first place is not only good for the environment, but for the economy and household budgets too.
Research shows that businesses can make £17 billion in annual savings by taking simple steps to produce less waste. Reusing products such as household appliances and furniture could save households £1 billion each year and help create jobs.
Resource Management Minister Lord de Mauley said:
Reducing waste is everyone’s responsibility. What we have set out in this programme will help businesses to save money, help people cut back on waste and pass on items that they would otherwise throw away. This consultation is an opportunity to comment on our suggestions on how this can be achieved so that we can protect the environment and help boost the economy.
The seven-week consultation seeks the views of councils, consumers and businesses on a number of proposals to:
help businesses and local authorities recognise the savings to be made by cutting waste and managing resources better.
make it easier for people to find out how to reduce waste and pass on items they no longer use, such as old clothing, household appliances and electrical items.
ensure products are designed to last longer, contain less hazardous parts, and reduce the environmental impact of the waste they create.
There are a range of steps that the government has already taken to help reduce waste, such as the Love Food Hate Waste campaign, which helps people reduce the amount of food waste they produce, while the Courtauld Commitment helps companies reduce the amount of packaging they use.
The results of the consultation will inform the final programme which is due to be finalised in December 2013 as part of the EU Waste Framework Directive. All EU member states have until this time to report how they plan to prevent waste.
The consultation runs until Monday, 23 September.
More information is available here: link text