Defra consults on the Waste Prevention Programme

07 August 2013

Defra has launched a consultation on its long-awaited Waste Prevention Programme (WPP) for England, which is open to businesses, local authorities and consumers.

The results of the consultation will inform the final programme, which is due to be finalised in December 2013 as part of the EU Waste Framework Directive. The seven-week consultation is seeking views on a number of proposals to encourage greater product durability and reuse strategies. 

According to Defra, the programme for England aims to protect the environment and human health by ‘preventing or reducing the adverse impacts of the generation and management of waste, by reducing overall impacts of resource use and improving the efficiency of such use’.

It is hoped the WPP will: help businesses and councils realise savings to be made from reducing waste and improving resource efficiency; make it easier for consumers to find out how to reduce waste and reuse; and ensure products are designed to last longer, contain less hazardous parts, and reduce the environmental impact of the waste they create.

The plan sets out its rationale by referring to research that shows businesses can make £17bn in annual savings by taking simple steps to produce less waste. In addition, reusing products such as household appliances and furniture could save households £1 billion each year and help create jobs. 

In launching the consultation, Defra Resource Management Minister Lord de Mauley said that reducing waste was everyone's responsibility. "What we have set out in this programme will help businesses save money, help people cut back on waste and pass on items that they would otherwise throw away. This consultation is an opportunity to comment on our suggestions on how this can be achieved so that we can protect the environment and help boost the economy." 

The consultation runs until September 23 and can be accessed at