ESA Roundtable To Tackle Deteriorating Recycling Markets

The Environmental Services Association (ESA) is today hosting a high-level roundtable event to discuss challenges in the UK’s recyclate markets, following recent months’ turbulence.

The ESA has said that it is very concerned about recent “downward trends” in the UK’s recyclate markets.

It says many waste and resource management companies, reprocessors and local authorities are under severe pressure because of this.

ESA’s Recycling Policy Adviser, Jakob Rindegren said: “While some of the causes, such as the drop in oil price and the fall in newspaper readership, are clearly difficult to tackle, we want to bring together stakeholders from across the whole of the supply chain to discuss what can be done, both immediately and in the longer term.

ESA’s Recycling Policy Adviser, Jakob Rindegren – “While some of the causes, such as the drop in oil price and the fall in newspaper readership, are clearly difficult to tackle, we want to bring together stakeholders from across the whole of the supply chain to discuss what can be done, both immediately and in the longer term”

“In our view, everyone needs to work more closely with each other to ensure that all recyclable waste we collect also has a viable end market.

“This is absolutely critical if we truly want to treat waste as a resource, which is clearly important for creating a sustainable domestic resource industry, maximising value for local authority recycling services and meeting our recycling targets.

We want to send a strong message to the incoming Government that they have to take this issue seriously, show leadership and adopt meaningful measures to repair the UK’s recycling markets.”

ESA’s recent Circular Economy report “Going for Growth – A practical route to a circular economy”, which outlines how a Circular rather than a linear economy can help manage resources sustainably, can be downloaded here.

Administration

Aylesford Newsprint (pictured), a Kent-based recycled newsprint paper manufacturer, went into administration in February, blaming “challenging operating conditions” for the closure, including overcapacity in the newsprint market, coupled with the rise of digital media. (See CIWM Journal Online story)

It supplied newsprint to some of the main newspaper groups, employed nearly 300 people and recorded a turnover of £139m in 2013.

233 jobs were lost as a result of it going into administration.

It was also announced yesterday that Tullis Russell Papermakers Limited has gone into administration with the loss of 325 jobs.

The company suffered a pre-tax loss of £3.4m, dues to reports of weakening demand and the move from paper to digitally-based products, resulting in worldwide oversupply and price competition.

Closed Loop Recycling (CLR), the UK’s largest recycler of plastic milk bottles, said in March that without financial support from the industry or government, going into administration is “inevitable”, after the slump in global oil prices have forced clients to cut back on the amount of recycled plastic they purchase.

Closed Loop Recycling produces more than 80% of recycled plastic used in milk bottles in the UK. Prices that can be achieved for recycled material has fallen nearly 40% in the past nine months, due to a drop in global oil prices (see CIWM Journal Online story)


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