Redesigning the Government's approach to resources

December 2018
Redesigning the Government's approach to resources
The Government's resources and waste strategy, published in December 2018, matches many of the recommendations in our reports with CIE-MAP: Less in, more out (May 2018) and By popular demand (November 2018), and with CETF: Recycling reset (January 2017) including in the following areas:
  • The promise to embed a 'polluter pays' approach in many product streams beyond packaging. This aligns with our recommendations in both reports.
  • The Government's promise to 'develop a model for realising resource efficiency savings’, and work with businesses through "resource efficiency clusters"' aligns with our idea for resource efficiency partnerships in Less in, more out. 
  • The strategy outlines the need to improve resource efficiency in the construction sector. In the annex to this section it directly acknowledges the Less in, more out: 'CIE-MAP and Green Alliance (2018) recommend that policies should focus on higher substitution towards low carbon materials, increased reuse of construction materials and reduction in material inputs through increased design optimisation.'
  • The strategy uses By popular demand as evidence to promote reuse, repair and remanufacture. In the introduction it asserts that 'there is emerging evidence that improving resource efficiency is popular with the public. CIE-MAP and Green Alliance (2018) found most people see the need to shift towards a society that uses resources more efficiently. The study also found 60% were supportive of a "drastic shift" towards a resource efficient society even if that changed the way they live. People tended to favour approaches that were carried out by others (e.g. redesigning packaging) or were not too restrictive (e.g. a collaborative economy).'
  • The promise to develop a quality assurance scheme for remanufacturing is something we suggested could boost consumer confidence in By popular demand.
  • A commitment to continue moving away from a focus on waste towards a focus on resources, with the explicit aim of helping 'businesses make better decisions, for example by considering relative carbon emissions from reuse rather than disposal of a product' is not only in line with our recommendations but is a welcome recognition that resource efficiency is as much a carbon policy as it is a resource policy.