Plaid MP calls for radical shift in environmental attitude


Plaid Cymru’s Hywel Williams MP  hosted a debate on waste reduction (18/05/11) and called for a Europe-wide shift towards more positive environmental behaviour.

In his Westminster Hall debate on ‘Government policy on waste reduction’, Mr Williams challenged the government to develop targets for waste minimisation, not just goals to increase recycling, and to encourage cross-European partnership and good practise.
Mr Williams said that Wales is leading the way in terms of setting ambitious recycling and waste reduction targets.

The debate, supported by Friends of the Earth and the Real Nappy Alliance, coincides with “Real Nappy Week” designed to champion the use of re-usable products such as nappies which are better for the environment than disposables.

Speaking after the debate, Mr Williams said:

“While recycling is undeniably better for the environment than disposal or incineration, it is both less environmentally friendly and more expensive than waste minimisation.

“There are concerns though that we now focus too much on recycling. We need to ensure that there is a sufficient focus on waste prevention.

“Wales is leading the way in terms of setting ambitious targets for waste reduction and is being used by campaigners as a beacon of good practice - but what we need is a cross-European debate on waste reduction.
“There need to be discussions with industry about how to ensure that more is done to promote durable re-usable products. Decreasing the amount of packaging would make it cheaper for producers as well as easier for consumers.

“Now is the time for a complete shift in our environmental attitudes to encourage that greener behaviour.”


On Real nappies, Mr Williams added:

“It is Real Nappy Week, and that indeed is what drew me to this issue. Earlier this year I visited a small company in my constituency called Babykind. I was impressed with their enterprise, their commitment, and their enthusiasm for promoting environmental sustainability.
“Re-usable or “real” nappies are a fantastic example of waste reduction in action and something we should be promoted. There are clear benefits with less waste going to landfill, and of course it saves significant amounts of money for parents and for local authorities.”