I’ve been out and about again and last Friday I attended the sixth joint LARAC/CIWM annual event, held at Suez’s Reuse Hub in Trafford Park, Manchester.
We had six excellent speakers on various topics under the theme of “Resource Management of the Future”. Opening the event, Adam Read (Suez) gave us his view on what skills we need as an industry and Ágnes Szuda (Policy Connect) talked about the climate impact of food waste. After a quick networking break, Naomi Fitzgibbons (DEFRA) gave us the latest Central Government update concerning the Resources and Waste Strategy; Pete Wills (Resource Futures) tackled the issues around recycling plastic film and finally Ellen Painter and Roseanne Serrelli (Sharpe Pritchard) explained how changes to public procurement regulations are going to affect us. See the showreel of the event here.
Feedback from attendees on the day was great and they also enjoyed the site tour of the Reuse Hub, which houses repair pods to repair and upcycle unwanted items, as well as offering space to community, professional and educational groups for training and workshops.
For local authorities wanting to hear if we can move forward with any certainty on what the recently passed Environment Act proposes, I still feel we have to wait until the secondary legislation become clearer. We don’t know if three-weekly residual will be “allowed” or if garden waste charges are to be removed, and so we are waiting a bit longer, probably late 2022 in my view once the secondary legislation is passed.
The North West event also marked another occasion; this was Lee Marshall’s last in-person event as LARAC CEO, and this is the last LOL newsletter he will be involved in as his last working day is this Friday 26 November. Whilst we did our official thank you and goodbyes at the LARAC UK Conference in October, it felt fitting to say something here too.
Lee and I joined the LARAC Exec in the same year, 2002, and so it’s hard for me to imagine LARAC without “LARAC Lee” there. I’ve personally seen how much Lee has given to LARAC over the last 19 years; he’s been instrumental in shaping the organisation it has become today. In fact, everyone who knows Lee has seen his dedication to LARAC and how hard he has worked over the years. It has been a true pleasure to work with Lee over the years and personally I’d like to thank him for his support especially over the last 4 years of me being Chair.
On behalf of the Exec I know that he will be truly missed, but LARAC’s loss is CIWM’s gain, and we all wish him the very best for the future - and he still has honorary membership of LARAC so is allowed at Conference, mates rates of course !