WRAP and European funding to tackle the West Midlands' recycling gap
- Published on Thursday, 20 January 2011 15:06
- Posted by Scott Buckler
New job and business development opportunities for SMEs created by WRAP and European funding to tackle the West Midlands' recycling gapFollowing the success of the recent 'Advantage West Midlands' (AWM) programme, which will enable the recycling of over one million extra tonnes of commercial and industrial waste over the next four years, WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme) is pleased to announce a new business development fund. This aims to create the infrastructure to recycle a further 500,000 tonnes of waste by 2015. With the new business opportunities also comes the chance of new jobs for the region.
The new fund, worth £4 million and provided through European Regional Development Funding (ERDF) and WRAP, will focus on developing infrastructure capacity for harder to recycle materials. These include: mixed plastic, low grade wood, food waste, commercial and industrial collections, food waste collections and energy from waste infrastructure. The fund will be open for both small scale capital investments of up to £100K and larger scale investments of up to £500K, and will provide up to a significant contribution towards the cost of the plant or equipment.
Steve Creed, WRAP's Director of Business Resource Efficiency said: “The success of the Advantage West Midlands (and WRAP) programme has been to significantly increase the recycling and reprocessing capacity for commercial and industrial waste in the region. But there is more to be done if all business in the West Midlands are to have economic options to recycle their waste by 2020. The new European funding will build on this success and provide an opportunity to create more jobs in the recycling sector while at the same time contributing to long-term sustainable growth of businesses in the West Midlands.”
The funding, secured by WRAP in a European bidding round, demonstrates the success of the work delivered to date in the West Midland's region, which expects to save 280,000 tonnes of carbon per year and divert a further half a million tonnes of waste from landfill. Although this new funding will have a significant impact, there are likely to be ongoing opportunities for recycling businesses in the region to develop and expand. A study carried out by AWM and the Regional Technical Advisory Board (RTAB) forecasts that by 2020/21 the West Midlands will need a further three million tonnes of recycling capacity.