Merseyside and Halton have joined forces with other towns and cities around Europe to help cut waste across the continent – and are looking for local people to help bolster their efforts.
Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority (MRWA) has signed up to promote and coordinate the fourth European Week for Waste Reduction (EWWR) – 17th to 25th November 2012 – which aims to raise awareness about the simple actions people can take in everyday life to help contribute to waste reduction efforts.
The Authority is calling for organisations and individuals across the region to submit proposals for actions to take place during the Week. Projects can include those that prevent the production of waste, can repair and reuse broken or unused items, or will encourage home or community composting.
Projects can be submitted from the public and a range of target groups including community and voluntary associations, schools, colleges and universities, businesses, public authorities, hospitals and cultural institutions. The best examples of actions from each category will be nominated for the European Waste Reduction Awards to be held in Paris or Brussels in 2013.
Any project being considered for EWWR must cover one or more of the following themes:
• Too much waste: make known the importance of our waste production and its environmental and economical impact
• Better production: encourage businesses to put in place measures that allow for the reduction of large quantities of waste caused by their economic activity
• Better consumption: raise consumer awareness about the impact of their purchases on waste production
• A longer life for products: emphasise the means of increasing the life span of a new product (repair, reuse, etc.)
• Less waste thrown away: demonstrate the solutions that prevent waste being thrown away (paying attention to the use-by-date for the consumption of products, practising home composting, ‘No Junk Mail’ signs)
Examples of projects which could be organised include community swap days, waste management information exchange, exhibitions or promotional films of activities, competitions, waste free lunches, collections of clothes and other items for re-use, retailers to promote products which produce less waste, repair workshops for bikes or learning to sew.
Councillor Joe DeAsha, Chairperson of MRWA, said: “High recycling levels are crucial, but reducing the amount of waste produced in the first place is our ultimate aim. It helps to reduce our reliance on non-renewable resources, reduces carbon emissions and helps businesses to be more competitive.
“Being part of this European-wide waste reduction initiative will hopefully encourage Merseyside residents and local community groups and businesses to get involved in spreading the message of waste prevention.”
Statistics show that levels of waste in Merseyside bins which is sent to landfill is falling – a drop from 1203kg of waste created per household in 2008 to 1038kg in 2012 – but more still needs to be done.
The closing date for applications is 4th November 2012.
Councillor DeAsha continued: “I would encourage everyone to take up this challenge, use their imaginations and come up with new ideas and put the activities