Valpak, the UK’s largest producer responsibility scheme, welcomes DEFRA’s announcement of targets for industry for the next three years. The early announcement and the forward view of targets allow all businesses to plan and prepare for the future challenges they’ll face in the packaging arena and in assisting the UK to achieve its carbon obligations.
Valpak strongly believes that placing a legal responsibility onto business to recover and recycle packaging now and into the future, through a clear timetable of incremental targets, ensures all obligated business plays its part. It also means that all obligated business will be taking part in the carbon agenda and not just those who decide to on their own initiatives.
Steve Gough, Valpak’s Chief Executive, said: “To have a view of the targets so early in the year and for the next three years is hugely helpful, and we appreciate DEFRA’s efforts here. It helps us to continue to take steps well in advance to keep our members’ costs to a minimum.
“We’re hoping for more information on targets for 2011 and 2012, as well as on the issue of ‘broadly equivalent’ evidence, and we know the government is working on these issues as we speak.
“Early targets, strong legislation and a clear view of targets into the future mean that the government and business win on two levels: in the first place, producer responsibility legislation for packaging will deliver the UK contribution to the EU Directive, but on another level, the targets bind all business to the reason for having the legislation in the first instance, [which is] to ensure better resource efficiency and an improved environment.”
At a basic level, Valpak believes that the target levels are sensible and take due consideration of the most recent data available on how the UK can achieve its requirements under the EU Packaging Directive. Taking a wider view, it’s important for all to understand that this type of producer responsibility legislation binds a much more diverse range of businesses, small and large, into the efforts to combat environmental impact. Thus, all businesses pay their fair share of the costs towards reducing the impact of the packaging they release onto the market place.
These new targets will complement the wider aims of the Waste Strategy for England and Wales, and ensure business plays its role in achieving some of the aims of the review carried out in 2007.
There was concern about the levels proposed for aluminium recycling, and Valpak appreciates the fact that this has been reduced to a more manageable level. However, it adds that it’s important that the government addresses the issue of ‘broadly equivalent’ evidence for exporters as a matter of urgency, due to the effect it’s having on generating PERN export evidence, particularly for steel and aluminium.
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