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Tom Bird: recycling sector needs image building

The Bureau of International Recycling is to be the ‘go-to’ source for those needing to know about the recycling industry, according to the organisation’s president Tom Bird.

In his first welcome address as BIR president Bird told the body’s convention in Budapest his key priorities included expansion of the membership and a close working relationship with the media to promote the environmental, economic and social contribution of the recycling industry.

‘Recycling still has an image that needs improving and we really need to promote the positive contribution our industry makes,’ he said. ‘We will be updating all the figures in this area so we have the info to hand that will enable us to better argue our case. Our figures on the ferrous market are excellent but I believe we should offer more in other areas.’

Education is key

Repeating former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair’s mantra of ‘Education, education, education’ more than 20 years ago, Bird said education was one of the reasons BIR created the Global Recycling Foundation. ‘We will work more closely with the foundation and BIR will be looking at education programmes relating to our sector. We will be working to see what we can do to educate a wider audience of the role of recycling.’

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