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New CIWM President launches benchmarking report and demands greater global efficiency
In front of 200 guests at the House of Commons, the 2012/13 Chartered Institution of Wastes Management President John Skidmore was inaugurated this week and used the occasion to launch a major CIWM report.
Entitled Professional Perspectives on Waste & Resource Management, the report provides a current picture of waste and resource management across the UK and Ireland and draws on the views of CIWM members and the Institution regarding future issues, challenges and opportunities.
Looking across the board, John welcomed the different policy approaches that are emerging, but emphasised CIWM's view that meeting the big waste and resource challenges ahead will demand a co-ordinated approach across national boundaries and involving all stakeholders. He called for more government leadership and said that the waste prevention plans required by the Waste Framework Directive offer "a unique opportunity to put in place a long term vision to design out waste by ensuring that the roles and responsibilities at every stage of the product supply chain are recognised".
Quality is paramount both in terms of service delivery and recycling performance, but as well as resolving some of the current tensions regarding collection methods and frequency, John said that governments must ensure that the economic development potential of waste is also realised.
"We need measures to encourage businesses to capitalise on the value of secondary materials and waste-derived energy, recognising that dependency on sending these resources abroad may not be desirable or sustainable in the longer term. Governments must help to plan to keep waste and resources working here in the UK and Ireland, and that means working at a larger than local level and through inter-governmental collaboration."
Looking forward, John told the audience that CIWM members identified the need to deliver new infrastructure as one of the major challenges ahead, and said that the Institution is not confident that the right support to address barriers including planning and investment is yet in place.
Moving on to his presidential year, John identified a number of key priorities for the Institution, including communications, influence and partnership working with key players such as the retail sector, supporting the regulatory bodies in improving compliance, and health and safety.
Calling on the sector to find its 'Olympic spirit', John summed up by highlighting the need to build on the progress made so far and not lose momentum.
"With resource and energy security issues high on the agenda, and the spectre of climate change now ever present, we are at an exciting tipping point," he said. "We may need to work with, rather than against, the economic situation in which we find ourselves but there is no doubt that now is the time to be ambitious, to break down barriers, and to formulate a long term vision for waste management and resource use and conservation - not just for the term of one government, not even for the next decade, but for the next 100 years and more."
John, who takes over the presidential mantle from Derek Greedy, has been actively involved in the waste industry for over 30 years. He started out at the City of Wakefield Metropolitan District Council and held numerous positions at the council before moving in 2007 to the East Riding of Yorkshire Council, the largest unitary council in England by area, as Head of Streetscene Services. In this role, he is responsible for all outside services, and is also the Project Director for Hull City Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council's joint waste procurement
Elected to the Institution as a corporate member in 1985, John joined the North East Centre Council 15 years ago, and has held the position of Honorary Centre Secretary for 13 years. He is also a member of the CIWM Scientific and Technical Committee and has been actively involved in the Institution's work, both internally and externally with other waste industry partners.
The report can be found at:
18th October 2012