The Confederation of Paper Industries (CPI) has today (31 March) published a position paper on how the quality of paper for recycling can be improved via separate collections of paper and card.
CPI believes that collection methods are a key element in achieving high-quality recycling and sees “little point” in standardising the list of recyclables collected at kerbside if the process then renders materials unusable by cross-contamination.
High-quality paper for recycling can only be achieved via separate collections of paper and card which provide a consistent, standardised, quality-focused collection regime that creates benefits through the supply chain, the CPI says.
The CPI claims that separate collections would reduce public confusion about what can and cannot be recycled, while delivering higher quality, higher value recyclate for local authorities, waste collectors and reprocessors.
CPI are calling for a dual bin approach a necessary minimum requirement, allowing paper and board to be collected separately.
The position paper emphasises the position of the Paper Industry on consistency of collections and urges the government to enact and “show leadership” by establishing a robust regulatory regime through separate collections for paper and card.
Through the position paper CPI have emphasised that developing a quality culture is the only way to achieve future recycling targets.
The CPI says that such a move will attract investment in paper manufacturing to the UK and provide reassurance to packaging producers who will be funding recycling collection systems and who expect that optimum collection systems are implemented to ensure high recycling rates and high-quality output.
Unless there are interventions to increase the quality of paper for recycling, there is a risk of disinvestment in the UK paper production and recycling infrastructure, as well as an inability to sell a contaminated recycling product into global markets, the CPI says.
The paper also calls the government to “support and incentivise” the reprocessing of harder to recycle fibre-based materials by providing funding streams to increase the range of fibre-based packaging items the UK’s paper mills can reprocess.
Dimitra Rappou, Director of Recycling at CPI, commented: “I am delighted to be able to present CPI’s new position paper on Consistency of Collections – I hope the government will take note of the recommendations within it to create a consistent, standardised, quality-focused collection regime.
“Through the position paper CPI have emphasised that developing a quality culture is the only way to achieve future recycling targets whilst increasing the quality of recyclate entering the waste stream, educating citizens about the value of resources and supporting the transition to a circular, resource efficient economy.”
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