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Waste awareness training

11 September 2012

With waste becoming a bottom line issue for most businesses, the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM) has launched an enhanced version of its Sustainable Waste Awareness Certificate.

The one-day ‘Waste Smart’ training course is targeted at all types of businesses interested in improving environmental compliance, reducing waste costs, and encouraging a culture of more sustainable waste and resource management within their operations.

Since the course was first developed in 2003, over 12,000 certificates have been issued to organisations including the BBC, Network Rail, Associated British Ports and HMP Wormwood Scrubs, meeting the growing need for better knowledge about sustainable waste practices and compliance with key legislation such as the Duty of Care Regulations that came into force in the early 90s. Now, with policy and legislation moving on apace, and the cost of both waste disposal and raw materials becoming a bottom line priority for many businesses, the certificate has been refreshed and expanded.

“Quite aside from rising waste disposal costs and raw material prices, the Waste Framework Directive now requires businesses to take account of the EU Waste Hierarchy when making decisions about the management of waste, and UK governments have commercial and industrial waste firmly in their sights,” said CIWM chief executive Steve Lee. “With pressure growing on business and industry to find ways to reduce waste, improve resource efficiency and be proactive in developing more sustainable practices across the board, we felt the training could offer more and needed to cater for different levels of business responsibility.”

The Waste Smart training is targeted at those who generate or handle waste and aims to ensure that they understand why and how waste should be managed sustainably and what steps they can take to improve performance, including:
? exploring the importance of sustainable waste and resource management in terms of financial, environmental and social costs to the business;
? explaining different options and best practice for managing wastes and resourses within organisations; and
? understanding legal obligations and the implications of non-compliance
Those who need to implement, manage and monitor improvements in waste and resource management, may then undertake the additional element which provide an opportunity to provide an opportunity to build skills and best practice by exploring in more detail how to:
? identify and measure key waste streams;
? identify opportunities for preventing waste, increasing recycling and improving the management of unavoidable wastes; and
? monitor and evaluate improvements.

Defra, the Environment Agency, WRAP, CBI, and the manufacturers’ organisation EEF are just some of the organisations that CIWM worked with to fully review and update the content of the certificate. The course is also highlighted in the Responsibility Deal with between Government, ESA, and other partners including the Environment Agency and the Federation of Small Businesses. The objective of this Deal is to improve further the management of waste as a resource in the economy through an agreed set of commitments, one of which is “helping businesses do the right thing….by raising awareness of the need to prevent waste and manage what arises more sustainably”. The Deal states that Defra will work with partners to raise businesses’ awareness of their waste responsibilities and provide signage to specific new services or changes, including the new Sustainable Waste Awareness Certificate.

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