independent

Monday 23 July 2018

There's money in muck and our local communities can benefit from it

Maria Herlihy

A huge shift is needed in consumer behaviour at national, community and individual level when it comes to 'the circular economy'.

The Community Reuse Network Ireland (CRNI) with support from the Southern Region Waste Office, hosted a seminar on local development opportunities in reuse and recycling for Cork.

Community Reuse Network Ireland has a vision where the word 'waste' doesn't exist and where our entire community benefits from the social, environmental and economic value of all reusable resources.

Reuse reduces the volume of waste being discarded while also conserving natural resources, energy and water. Reuse also offers significant economic benefits by creating jobs and boosting local economies.

The interactive event held at the Silver Springs Hotel in Cork was then followed by a tour of the Boomerang Recycling operation, which is based at Ballyvolane Business Park.

The seminar covered reuse and recycling in the context of the circular economy and Pauline McDonogh, Waste Prevention Coordinator for the Southern Waste Region, emphasised that a shift is needed in consumer behaviour at a national, community and individual level. Those in attendance included the Local Enterprise Office staff from CCC, local development companies, members of the prison service and existing reuse and recycling enterprise.

The reuse and recycling enterprises in attendance highlighted their many challenges and successess with Triona Murphy from Duhallow Revamp stating that strong local governance has been a key part of their success.

Paul Kelly from Boomerang Recyling outlined the positive impact of their social enterprise on communities with an impressive 52% progression rate to employment from placements.

The workshop session also highlighted the need for 'joined up thinking' and action both at a national and local level.

In addition, there is the need for recognition and support of social enterprises and theimpact which they have on local communiites.

There was also agreement among attendees that government leadership was needed to highlight the importance of waste reduction from both an economic and environmental perspective.

The Community Reuse Network Ireland is an all-Island representaive body for community based reuse, recylcing and waste prevention organisations. Their vision is an Ireland where the word 'waste' doesn't exist and where the entire community benefits from the social, environmental and economic value of all reusable resources.

Corkman

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