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Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN 115749, tabled on 16 November 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of a capital investment programme to support reuse, repair, remanufacturing, and recycling of scrap steel, glass, paper and card, plastics and biowaste.

Answered on

19 November 2020

The Government's Resources and Waste Strategy sets out our intention to move away from the linear 'make, take, use, throw' economic model to a more circular economy, keeping resources in use as long as possible so we extract maximum value from them.

We are investing some £3 billion of grant funding in 24 Private Finance Initiative waste infrastructure projects. Along with disposal of residual waste facilities (such as energy from waste plants), these grants support infrastructure including material recovery, mechanical biological treatment and anaerobic digestion facilities, as well as implementation and expanding kerbside recycling services, which help facilitate improvements in recycling levels.

In addition, £4.7 million of grant funding was announced on 12 June 2019 and made available through WRAP's Resource Action Fund to support new capital infrastructure projects that will help to recycle difficult plastic packaging and textile materials. A further £1 million of grant funding was also announced to provide capital support to increase recycling infrastructure for non-household municipal waste from businesses.

Infrastructure is central to our economic strategy, and the government will shortly publish a National Infrastructure Strategy (NIS) setting out further details on its long-term ambitions, including decarbonisation and levelling up.

The NIS will also formally respond to recommendations, including recommendations on waste, made by the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) in its National Infrastructure Assessment, which is based on detailed consideration of the UK's long-term infrastructure needs.

The NIC's impartial, expert advice is central to the Government's infrastructure decision-making process. The NIC's work was the catalyst for many of the important spending decisions taken at previous fiscal events. The Government will build on this further when we publish the NIS.

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