Ministry of Justice launches Circular Economy strategy


Ministry of Justice

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has published its circular economy strategy as part of its aim to reduce costs, protect the environment and be less wasteful.

The strategy sets out the MoJ’s ten circular economy objectives and its strategic priorities: waste governance, smart waste management and building an internal circular economy.

The MOJ estate covers over 1,500 rural and urban sites, including more than 100 prisons across England and Wales. 

The department said its ambition is to fully contribute towards the government’s target under the Environment Act to halve residual waste per person by 2042 and its target under the Climate Change Act to meet net zero by 2050.

The MoJ said it is also working to create green jobs for prisoners by “harnessing the unique capability of the prison estate” to repair, remanufacture and recycle our resources.

As part of its waste governance strategic priorities, the MoJ said it will work with staff and suppliers to meet Greening Government Commitments, Environment Act duties and the 2042 waste reduction target.

The MoJ said it will also work to procure goods and services that support waste reduction and its circular economy aspirations, ensure staff can access appropriate training and learn from best practices, and create a “strong link” between prison waste management and jobs for prison leavers.

To build an internal circular economy within the MoJ’s estate, the department said it will establish circular economy workshops to repair and remanufacture assets and embed circular economy principles in its construction programmes.

The MoJ’s long-term circular economy vision includes only procuring durable, sustainable products that are made‑to‑be‑made‑again and can be repaired in prison workshops.

The MoJ also said it wants to equip prisoners, prison leavers and MoJ service users with the knowledge and skills to gain jobs in the waste and circular economy sector. The Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM) helped deliver 2,379 WAMITAB waste qualifications to prisoners between 2018 and 2023. 

In January 2023, the MoJ hosted the “waste jobs routeway” event, which aimed to create stronger links between prison waste management work and jobs in the waste sector.

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