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Success at North London Waste Prevention Exchange

February 19 2016
123 delegates enjoyed this year’s North London Waste Prevention Exchange hosted by North London Waste Authority (NLWA). The event was held in Islington on Tuesday 16 February and its main theme focused on ‘From awareness raising to action’ – using waste prevention initiatives to inspire long term behaviour change. Attendees included Elected Members, officers from regional and local authorities, and regional and national third and private sector organisations.

There were eight speakers from within the waste industry who were all clearly passionate about minimising waste giving a range of informative and engaging presentations sharing best practice on waste prevention actions and monitoring techniques.

Cllr Clyde Loakes, Chair of NLWA, opened the event and described how the EC Circular Economy Package which was launched in December put waste prevention at the heart of the policy agenda, whilst Debbie Hitchen, Associate Director, Anthesis (UK) Ltd began proceedings discussing the EC Circular Economy and what it means for waste prevention. Dr Rosemary Snelgar, Principal Lecturer in Psychology, University of Westminster looked at the psychology behind waste prevention behaviours. Jon Molyneux, Head of Communications and Engagement, Zero Waste Scotland looked at translating awareness to action through effective engagement methods and discussed Scotland’s plans following the announcement of the EC Circular Economy Package.

James McGowan, Love Food Hate Waste Manager, WRAP concluded the first morning session with a discussion about the strategic vision for waste prevention behaviour change in London.

Prof Paul Pace, Director, Centre of Environmental Education, University of Malta spoke about the role of education in behaviour change and what can waste prevention learn from other behaviour change initiatives. Roberto Cavallo, President, International Association for Environmental Communications and Emanuela Rosio, Director, ERICA, Italy gave a joint presentation on community engagement as a route to behaviour change using experiences from Italy. Their presentation covered a variety of instruments that can be implemented to bring about a reduction in waste, such as community composting and pay-as-you-throw systems. Roberto and Emanuela even went on to ‘star rate’ each action in ‘Trip Advisor’ style to show how replicable they thought their actions would be in London. Finishing the morning session, Gavin Ellis, Co-Founder of Hubbub spoke about encouraging lifestyle changes to reduce waste, giving experiences from north London activities.

In the afternoon, two workshop sessions were held by Prof Paul Pace and Sarahjane Widdowson, Principal Consultant, Ricardo AEA which focused on the ingredients of a successful prevention programme to achieve behavioural change as well as looking at local authorities as agents of behavioural change.

Additionally, the presence of information stands from NLWA, DHL Envirosolutions, EcoACTIVE, ReStore Community Projects and Groundwork provided delegates with the opportunity to find out more about local waste prevention, re-use and recycling projects.

Delegates were also able to enjoy a delicious lunch with recipes taken from the ‘North London Food Lovers Cookbook’– produced with recipes from local residents using left-over ingredients.


Councillor Clyde Loakes, chair of NLWA who opened the event commented, ‘The annual waste prevention exchange is a great opportunity to get industry experts together to share best practice about the waste industry. Waste prevention always has to be top of the waste hierarchy and we need to share information within the industry to try and make sure we use prevention techniques effectively and measure the impact of what we do. The exchange was inspirational and I hope delegates left with some thought provoking idea’s to take back to discuss with colleagues within their own organisations. I am already looking forward to next year’s exchange.’

For further information about the waste prevention exchange and for consumer information about NLWA’s waste prevention activity visit wiseuptowaste.org.uk

Below: photograph of Councillor Clyde Loakes (second from left) with the speakers of the North London Waste Prevention Exchange.

photograph of Councillor Clyde Loakes (second from left) with the speakers of the North London Waste Prevention Exchange.