A senior Labour politician has urged the UK plastics industry to do more to get its message across to government, particularly in the areas of energy supply and resource security. Speaking at the PRE conference in Telford today, Barry Gardiner, shadow environment minister, said resource security was a critical factor in the development of a sustainable economy.
“Resource security is a growing problem and a key priority for me. We have to understand the role of the plastics industry in this area.
“Government can and should play a more strategic role in creating more resilience in the face of energy price shocks. But this government has disengaged from your industry.”
Gardiner said government intervention to create a proper framework to enhance resource security was “absolutely vital”, while the plastics industry needed to “shout louder” to ministers about its needs in this area.
The Labour MP also said the pace of growth in the UK’s recycling infrastructure had not kept pace with rising recycling rates.
He also called for more plastic waste to be recycled in the UK: “Why are we undermining our own recycling industry? We shouldn’t be throwing money at people who ship it out of the country.”
There was no such thing as waste, Gardiner said: “It is a resource and should always be seen as such.”
After his speech Gardiner told PRW that a Labour government would “simplify” many of the agencies companies had to deal with in their day-to-day operations in order to reduce the burden of red tape.