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The traditional House Clearance & recycling industry in this country is not only under threat, but facing extinction. In years to come, David Attenborough will be making documentaries about House Clearance & recycling companies; carefully preserved specimens may be allowed to exist in certain areas, but they will be few and far between (and no doubt under close observation).
What is the reason behind this doom mongering? The reason is the official and unofficial events of recent months. After the Duty of Care and Waste Management licensing laws amongst others, the Special Waste Regulations may be the straw that breaks the camels back. It could be argued that the new Special Waste laws seem to be designed to cripple the existing recycling & House Clearance industry, and sinisterly, create a new one in different image. For example, look at the car battery recycling industry. Small batches of used batteries are collected nationwide and reprocessed.
This system is based on a network of small private companies, many of them family owned and long established. The recycling rate for these batteries has been maintained at a high level, without subsidy or artificial market manipulation. One would assume that ‘the maxim if it works, don’t fix it’ would be appropriate here, yet the Government has introduced legislation designed to hinder and even prevent the natural system of battery recycling. There are even rumours that a new subsidy system may be introduced: an environmental surcharge on the sale of new batteries to fund their recycling.
How interesting! If this is true, then it would be fascinating to find out just who would run such a system, and why it was felt necessary to replace the present system, which maintains a high recycling rate without any subsidies, with a new system which runs on extra cash squeezed out of the consumer in the name of the environment. Even the national newspapers are reporting on this story; one can only hope that the threat of another Government scandal could stop any such plans in their tracks.