Benefits of re-use

By repairing or re-using goods which still retain some operational value there are social, financial and environmental benefits in comparison to producing a brand new product.  

Environmental benefits

  • Reduction in demand on finite natural resources and the associated environmental impacts of the extraction, harvesting and processing of those resources.
  • Minimisation of greenhouse gas emissions associated with waste collection, transportation and treatment.

Financial benefits

  • Lower costs of purchasing items (instead of purchasing new items at greater cost).
  • Potential cost savings to residents in areas where they pay for bulky waste collections.
  • Reduced local authority waste management budget (if handling smaller quantities of waste).

Social benefits

  • Creation of jobs and training opportunities for disadvantaged groups such as the long term unemployed, ex-offenders, those with disabilities etc.
  • Creation of further options for volunteering in the community.
  • Local residents can buy or obtain goods which they may have not been able to afford as new items. 
  • Increased social inclusion gained from people partaking in community activities.
  • Certain re-use schemes can be linked to fundraising for the local community.

Item-specific benefits

WRAP has developed a product re-use tool showing the benefits of increasing re-use. In addition there are a number of item-specific reports which outline the benefits of re-use for that item:

Furniture

Benefits of re-use case study – office furniture 

Benefits of re-use case study – domestic furniture 

Waste Electrical & Electronic Equipment 

The value consumer electronics  

The value of re-using household WEEE  

Benefits of re-use case study   

Non clothing textiles

The viability of collecting non-clothing textiles  

Clothing

Benefits of re-use case study   

Valuing our clothes