Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
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Six "zero waste places" named across England

Six "zero waste places" named across England

DEPARTMENT FOR ENVIRONMENT, FOOD AND RURAL AFFAIRS News Release (News Release ref: 333/08) issued by COI News Distribution Service. 21 October 2008

Six places ranging from a residential street to an entire region of England were named as England's first 'Zero Waste Places' by Environment Minister Jane Kennedy today.

The Zero Waste Places will aim to go as far as possible in reducing the environmental impact of waste, whether it be at home, in the workplace or in the community.

The six places chosen to implement zero waste plans are:

* The London Borough of Brent, which will develop 20 Green Zones across the borough by September 2009, which will involve establishing Green Teams of residents and developing a GIS-based map of the borough showing green 'threads' growing through the borough to track the progress of the initiative.

* Shenley Church End in Milton Keynes will see the area of nearly 1500 homes, two schools and a number of high street businesses aim to cut waste and litter right across the area.

* Kings Lynn in Norfolk will achieve zero waste as far as possible within the historic area of the Tuesday Market, which is home to businesses and homes, as well being a tourist hotspot and the focus of many civic events.

* The London Borough of Lewisham will run an Eco Street initiative, where around 100 properties will be targeted through a range of measures including specialist advice and support to cut waste.

* Peterborough will run a Zero Waste City Centre initiative, which will focus on Cathedral Square and the three streets leading from it (Bridge Street, Cowgate and Long Causeway), including the Queensgate Shopping Centre, encompassing more than 200 retailers and offices, including the Town Hall and council offices.

* The West Midlands will create a Zero Waste Region, focussing on businesses and organisation that produce a large quantity of waste, identifying region-wide waste infrastructure needs, improving co-operation and cutting business waste right across the region.

Jane Kennedy said:

"Across England, we are seeing communities come together with innovative ideas and a shared determination to tackle waste locally.

"These six zero waste places will test what can be done to make it easier for people and businesses to change the way they view and deal with waste"

The Zero Waste Places have been selected as demonstrators for innovative and replicable initiatives that enable waste prevention in schools, households and businesses, and support local authorities in taking leadership reducing the overall environmental impact of waste.

The scheme is being managed on behalf of Defra by the BREW Centre for Local Authorities. Susan Kent, BREW Centre Manager said:

"These places will go as far as possible to reduce, reuse and recycle all types of waste whether it's from a home, a school or business. We are really looking forward to working with the 6 places, and seeing how their approaches can change our behaviour towards waste."

Notes to Editors

The Zero Waste Place initiative was announced as part of the Waste Strategy in May 2007 which committed the Government to take forward the initiative as one of the measures to embed changed behaviour across the country.

"Zero waste" is a simple way of encapsulating the aim to go as far as possible in reducing the environmental impact of waste. Defra expects zero waste places to implement plans, which make a "significant attack" on waste at different stages in the hierarchy especially waste prevention.

The objective of the project is to identify and monitor 6 places to become exemplars of good environmental practice on all waste. The participating places will fulfil a pathfinder role in identifying the barriers and illustrating solutions to enable others to adopt the most effective approach to zero waste, providing a year-end report in 2009.

The key output of this project will be the collation of a report creating an evidence base on the barriers and possible solutions to achieving a zero waste place. This evidence base will be promoted as guidance for other areas looking to work towards a zero waste ambition.

Joan Ruddock officially announced the opening of the Scheme on the 18 June at the Sustainable Consumption and Production Conference in London and invited local authorities to put forward proposals for a zero waste place by the 17 September. All the proposals received were then assessed against the published assessment criteria with the 6 strongest proposals being chosen to take part in the initiative.

About The BREW Centre:

The BREW Centre for Local Authorities provides support to local authorities encouraging them to use their leadership role to reduce their business communities' impact on the environment. The BREW Centre is ideally positioned to support Defra in the delivery of this initiative because the Zero Waste Places are looking to take a holistic approach to waste, not just focusing on household waste.

Between 2006 and 2008 the BREW Centre and its funded projects diverted 74,638 tonnes from landfill and saved small to medium sized businesses more than £9.4m through resource efficiency measures. Over the next five years these same projects will divert more than 372,000 from landfill and save businesses more than £47m.

The BREW Centre is a consortium between the Local Government Association, the National Industrial Symbiosis Programme, Oxfordshire County Council and West Midlands Regional Assembly.

For further information please contact: Sue Kent: 01865 815099

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