24th Jul 2010

Essex Materials Exchange

Author admin     Categories Miscellaneous

A materials exchange is a free online service that allows companies or organizations to list surplus resources, making them available for use by another, either for sale or free. This may encompass a wide range of materials, perhaps difficult wastes, which may not have recognized markets, brokers or dealers (e.g. wooden pallets, paper offcuts, office supplies and other raw materials.

If your business or organization wants further information on using the Essex Materials Exchange, check out the website at http://www.databases.org.uk/eastex/portal.asp.

Benefits of materials exchanges:

  • The companies that exchange their unwanted materials save money through avoiding disposal costs
  • The companies that receive materials get them at reduced cost or for free
  • They promote reuse, stop useful materials going to landfill and reduce the use of virgin resources while increasing profitability
  • They create new partnerships that promote sustainable environmental and economic practice

The term "Materials Exchange" is often used in preference to Waste Exchange, emphasizing that the substances transferred do have value. In general, only one material passes from one company to another - there is not an "exchange", although money may change hands. But a larger chain may open up for distribution or reuse of the material. Material exchanges can happen as a once-off or on an ongoing basis.

Examples from the Cambridgeshire Materials Exchange:

Several companies had an excess supply of wooden pallets. Via the exchange, a manufacturer was contacted, and now the pallets are either reconditioned and go back into the supply chain, or are used to create garden furniture and other wooden products.

An organisation in Peterborough had 48 visitors' chairs, and was having trouble finding a suitable home for them. The exchange enabled them to contact some local schools, and a local junior school is now the proud owner of a set of new classroom chairs - there were even enough spare for some to be put in the staff room.

Essex Materials Exchange

The Essex Materials Exchange was originally managed by The Essex Community Recycling and Reuse Network (ECORRN), working with Essex County Council, the Environment Agency and the local Partners of the regional materials exchange network titled East Ex - combined, these include, Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire. East Ex was funded by EEDA and BREW until March 2008 and had specific targets to meet.

Materials Exchange websites:

Eastern Region Materials Exchange Network
Northamptonshire Exchange
Surrey Materials Exchange
Waste Exchange UK
Cambridgeshire Materials Exchange
DETR Materials Information Exchange
- Free exchange - allows the construction industry to buy and sell used, second hand and un-utilised construction materials.
Staffordshire & West Midlands Waste Exchange - Free waste exchange for the Staffordshire and the West Midlands area.

US Based Sites

Calgary M EX USA
California Exchange
King County US

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