News round-up June 2024 (2024)

Recoup discovers historical litter; BMRA launches training portal; Small businesses welcome plastic action; Refill Coalition scoops prize

Recoup discovers historical litter

Recycling charity Recoup has discovered a crisp packet with an expiry date of 1997 on a recent litter pick.

During the organisation’s Litter Composition and Pathways Project, the team collected 7 bags over a two-hour period – including the packet of Walkers’ cheese & onion crisps.

The project aims to gather better data to drive effective solutions to reduce litter. It is supported by funding from McDonalds and Ocado Retail.

“It has been really interesting to see the variety of both new and legacy litter we have been collecting from each litter pick,” said Recoup’s projects and data manager Laura Hutchings. “There is an obvious need for highly thought-out, targeted interventions for the prevention of litter, and this project will provide key data and insights to help achieve this”.

Press release

BMRA launches training portal

The British Metals Recycling Association (BMRA) has launched a training portal, BMRA Academy.

Discounted for members,courses covering technical competence, plant & equipment and electric vehicles, are validated by the BMRA and accredited. The academy also offers the Metal Recycling General Operative - the industry’s level 2, sector-specific apprenticeship.

Antonia Grey, BMRA head of policy & public affairs and training lead said: “I am proud to see the academy go live. I am pleased we can offer members access to fit-for-purpose, high-quality training devised for the metals recycling industry.”

The BMRA represents the £7.5bn metals recycling sector, made up of an estimated 2,500 businesses and employing over 15,000 people.

Press release

Small businesses welcome plastic action

A survey from WWF and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation has shown that the majority of micro-sized, small and medium businesses (MSMEs) would welcome the introduction of stronger policies to tackle plastic pollution.

The survey questioned more than 130 small businesses on whether they would support the introduction of a UN-backed global treaty.The planned treaty will cover all stages of the plastic lifecycle, from production to waste management. It is set to be finalised by the end of this year.

Research showed that 63% ofrespondents viewed the treaty positively, while 37% were neutral. The majority of MSMEs (75%) were aware of the treaty.

“MSMEs represent 90% of businesses across the planet and are essential to the successful implementation of the treaty,” said theEllen MacArthur Foundation'sglobal treaty manager, Marta Longhurst.

Sustainability Beat

Refill Coalition scoops prize

A collection of the UK’s leading reuse and refill experts have been recognised at the second Environmental Packaging Awards for their bulk reuse vessels.

The Refill Coalition – whose members include GoUnpackaged, Ocado Retail and Aldi UK – received their award for their solution to delivering refills at scale for household products.

“As a Coalition we share the mutual objective of reducing single-use plastic packaging and believe that the solution we have developed presents a landmark opportunity for us to make a step change in the commercialisation of reusable packaging,” said the coalition.

Press release

Twentieth birthday for Bristol wood project

The Bristol Wood Recycling Project was joined by co-leader of the Green Party, Carla Denyer to celebrate is 20th anniversary.

A co-operative social enterprise, the organisation collects waste woods from construction companies and other producers and sells used timber and workshop products.

Up to eight volunteers per dayjoin 12 permanent staff. It’s a member of the Community Wood Recycling network which now includes 28 social enterprises.

Denyer said: “It's a pleasure to be able to join in the celebrations of Bristol Wood Recycling Project's 20th birthday. Bristol's identity as a green city made up of vibrant businesses and social, environmental and cultural projects is exemplified by BWRP.

Ben Moss, co-founder of BWRP said“What started off as a good idea has flourished into a cultural landmark in our city, the kind of ‘green enterprise’ that people associate Bristol with.

Press release

Half century for expanding CSG

A Teesside industrial waste processing business has employed its 50th full-time member of staff.

In 2012, the Middlesbrough-based business had four employees, including one driver. The privately-owned company posted a £100m turnover in its most recent accounts. It sponsors football clubs in Redcar and Darlington

The business specialises in disposing of oily water, interceptor waste, marine waste, engine oil, paints, solvents and coolants in Teesside, Newcastle and North Yorkshire Over the last 12 years it has spent £1.8m on improving its Bolckow Industrial Estate site,.

Craig Dufferwiel, regional business manager, said: “We have further plans for growth as we continue to offer much needed industrial waste disposal services in the North East.”

CSG has submitted plans for a new £40 million plant in Teesside, creating 20 new jobs, including operators, chemists and engineers.

Press release

Cardboard solution to ‘tent trash’

Sustainable packaging business DS Smith has worked with cardboard tent designer, EnviroTent, to create a 100% recyclable cardboard tent.

It is estimated that 250,000 tents made of polymer-based nylon or polyester are abandoned each year[5] contributing to 900 tonnes of ‘tent trash’. They are hard to recycle and can remain in the ground for up to 200 years.

Research commissioned by DS Smith, reveals 70% of people that have bought a tent in the last five years have abandoned or binned it. Over half admitted they are likely to buy a tent and use it for just one event, such as at a festival

The cardboard tents have withstood four weeks outside in the winter. They are quieter than polyester tents, warmer when it is cold, and cooler when it is hot.

Tayla Evans, managing director of EnviroTent, said: “Festivals should be guilt-free and fun. I would love festival organisers to think carefully about how we can help festival goers avoid tent trash.”

Fresh Start trials recycled bins

Fresh Start Waste Services has introduced recycled wheelie bins supplied by ESE World, to promote environmentally responsible waste management.

The company has trialled 800 recycled bin containers at sites run by commercial property developer, Bruntwood across the North West.

Bins made from 100% virgin materials generate approximately 140.37 kg of CO2e per bin. In contrast, containers, made with 80% recycled HDPE plastic, produce only 108.83 kg of CO2e per bin. This translates to a saving of 31.54 kg of CO2e per bin and a 22.5% reduction in emissions.

Ben Entwistle, head of operations at Fresh Start Waste Services, said: “The introduction of recycled bins is a natural extension of our commitment to sustainability and reducing our environmental footprint.”

Fresh Start Waste Services works with over 7000 businesses across the North West of England. It has plans to make the use of recycled bins a mainstream practice if the trial is successful.

Press release

Enfinium steps up decarbonisation

Energy-from-waste operator Enfinium has said it diverted more than two million tonnes of unrecyclable waste from landfill in 2023, saving some 456,320 tonnes of emissions.

The company said installing gale breakers at its Ferrybridge 1 site significantly enhanced the energy efficiency of its operations.

It said its wider ambition is to transform its facilities into local ‘decarbonisation hubs’, powered by millions of tonnes of residual waste

Chief executive Mike Maudsley said:“Enfinium is on an ambitious journey to decarbonise its operations and deliver high-quality carbon removals at scale for the UK, and so it is important that we monitor progress against these plans.”

Press release

Powerday on path the cut emissions

London waste management and recycling company Powerday is to seek to reduce its Scope 1 and 2 carbon emissions by 4% by the end of this year, as part of its commitment to meet net zero by 2040. It will set a target for scope 3 reductions this year.

Powerdayinitiatives to help achieve these targets include transitioning seven sites to renewable energy, investing in battery storage technology and expanding its electric skip vehicle fleet.

Press release

Fire crews fight Mid UK blaze

Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue crews were called on Monday to a blaze at Mid UK’s recycling premises near Ancaster, Lincolnshire Live had reported. Fire crews fought the blaze overnight and the service said the cause was unknown.

The service said: "Eight crews from Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue and the aerial ladder platform attended this incident on Copper Hill Industrial Estate on the evening of 24 June. This has resulted in fire damage to the whole building used for commercial recycling, and its contents, including a conveyor belt and storage facilities.”

Lincolnshire Live

MSPs urged to toughen circular economy law

Campaigners have piled electrical waste outside the Scottish Parliament during its final debate on a new Circular Economy law this week.

Friends of the Earth Scotland said the new law lacked ambition and focused on disposal rather than reduction and reuse of products.

Kim Pratt, its circular economy campaigner, said: “Electrical waste contains precious material which is lost when these items are thrown away. Scotland can’t afford to keep treating electrical products, and the precious materials they contain, as disposable."

Press release

Call to bring municipal waste into trading scheme

Municipal waste incineration must be included in the European Union’s emission trading system, environmental campaign group Zero Waste Europe (ZWE) has said in a new report Incineration in the EU-ETS: A set of suggestions for its inclusion.

It said EU legislation made it possible to bring these emissions within the trading scheme but so far they had been included only for monitoring, reporting, and verification purposes.

Janek Vahk, ZWE’s zero pollution policy manager, said: “The inclusion of incineration within the EU-ETS is long overdue. Incinerators are poised to become the most carbon-intensive power source once coal is phased out. Bringing municipal waste incineration into the EU-ETS will ensure that every sector contributes to emission reductions, driving us towards a cleaner, more circular future.”

Press release

Money takes over at NWH

Waste management firm NWH Group has appointed Gavin Money as its managing director.

Money joined NWH from Biffa in 2023 and had held numerous senior roles over 10 years in the industry, the company said.

He was chief operating officer but led the company on an interim basis following the death in October 2023 of chief executive Mark Williams in a car accident.

Money said: “The NWH Group is a very well-respected brand in the industry. I’m honoured to lead the business as managing director and am committed to advancing our mission of delivering exceptional waste management solutions while driving sustainable growth. Together with our dedicated team, we will continue to innovate and exceed expectations in service delivery.”

Press release

Hammer attack reported at recycling centre

A man was taken to hospital with head injuries after an alleged hammer attack at Immingham community recycling centre, the BBC has reported.

Police were called on 19 June after reports a man had been assaulted by three people, with what is believed to be a hammer.

The alleged attackers are said to have fled the scene prior to officers arriving and a 43-year-old man was taken to hospital to receive treatment. Anyone with information is being urged to contact Humberside Police.

Detective inspector Tom Kelly said that although officers are in the early stages of enquiries, “we do believe this to be an incident between people known to each other”.


Council claims separate collection success

Separate paper and card recycling collections in South Kesteven have been successful, the council has said, with its waste team seeing an improvement in the quality of what people are putting into their silver dry recycling bins.

Deputy chief executive Richard Wyles said: “June collections…may be rejected where bins contain non-recyclables.

“Residents will see additional staff supporting bin crews on their rounds to leave a helpful tag when items have been incorrectly left in the silver recycling bin to clearly explain what can and can’t be in there.

“Paper and card, and soft plastics including bin bags, plastic carrier bags, clingfilm and crisp packets, are the most common items incorrectly left in the silver bin.”

South Kesteven was told in February by communities secretary Michael Gove to apologise to some 7,000 residents whose bins had been rejected for having incorrect contents.

Press release

FCC celebrates safety success

Waste management company FCC Environment has received two awards from the International Institute of Risk and Safety Management (IIRSM) for its health and safety work.

It took the ‘Barry Holt Award – Outstanding Risk Management Practice’ and ‘Most Impactful Risk Research Project’ at this year’s IIRSM Excellence Awards. Both saw FCC credited for its work on smart loaders with partner SiteZone Safety.

“We’re extremely proud to have won two awards for our smart loader system,” said head of safety, health, environment & quality, Paul Stokes. “It is a great recognition for the work our different teams do to ensure that the right behaviours are encouraged and everyone gets home safe and sound.”

The company’s landfill and quarries division also achieved a five-star grading from the British Safety Council.

Press release

iWaste gets green light for expansion

Commercial e-waste specialist Intelligent Waste Management has been granted permission to greatly increase the amount of WEEE it can treat.

The company has secured a permit from the Environment Agency to handle 25,000 tonnes of WEEE each year, up from its current 1,000 tonnes.

Louise Drysdale, iWaste’s general manager, said: “We have been working towards this point for nine months and so are overjoyed to have been successful in our application for this permit. We hope it will help transform the business by enabling us to take on larger contracts and offer our services new clients.”

An estimated two million tonnes of WEEE items are discarded by householders and companies in the UK every year.

Reading-based iWaste employs 35 people and celebrated its 10th anniversary last year. It provides collection, secure data destruction, recycling and disposal for businesses across the UK. It works for BP Oil, 3M and the NHS.

Press release

Dorset recycler finds ecommerce success

Eco Sustainable Solutions says its online sales have more than doubled after the launch of its dedicated ecommerce website.

After the site’s launch, the company now generates sales of over £2,700 a day, up 123% from when customers relied only on the company’s corporate website.

“By any measure, the launch of our new dedicated ecommerce site has been a big success,” said Byrony Hammond, Eco’s brand and communications executive.

The family-run business converts over 230,000 tonnes of organic waste into green energy and landscape products. It employs 47 people and has a turnover of £17m.

Press release

Birmingham academics call for plastics rethink

The Plastics Network at the University of Birmingham is calling for a rethink of plastic policies after the UK’s major political parties barely mentioned ‘plastic’ or ‘recycling’ in their election manifestos.

A report by the university’s Sustainable Plastics Policy Commission has made a series of recommendations to the incoming government with a view to “amplifying the positive contributions that plastics make to our lives while minimising their negative impacts throughout their life cycle”.

This includes ‘revaluing’ plastic waste to support green growth and stimulate next-generation plastic production and recycling technologies. It also suggests a national sustainable plastics innovation research centre.

A survey conducted by the Commission found that UK residents are more concerned about the threat of plastic pollution than the coronavirus pandemic, terrorism, economic collapse or artificial intelligence.

Press release

Royal Mail reduces waste with trolley sleeves

An estimated 2,000 tonnes of waste was saved last year through the use of reusable trolley sleeve, says the Royal Mail.

The in-house-designed sleeves replaced single-use cardboard in its ‘Yorks’, cutting waste by 10% last year and helping the company hit its 2030 target of a 25% reduction in waste, compared with its 2020/21 base year.

“We have not only met our waste reduction target, but have done so seven years ahead of schedule,” said Zebrina Hanly, head of environment. “This wouldn’t have been possible without the innovation from our engineering team as well as the hard work of our posties and wider operational staff.”

The new sleeves, made from corrugated plastic, can be used up to 3,000 times over an estimated lifespan of four years.

Press release

New policy officer for LARAC

The Local Authority Recycling Advisory Committee (Larac) has appointed Tom McBeth in the newly created role of policy officer.

McBeth has spent almost five years at Recoup as their policy & infrastructure manager and was nominated for a ’35 under 35’ award in 2022.

Larac policy and communications lead Toni McNamara said: “As we continue to have uncertain but exciting times for everyone in the sector, I am sure Tom will bring a great deal of knowledge and experience to this new and exciting role.”

Meanwhile, Larac’s executive director Carole Taylor has opted for early retirement in October, having been involved with the Committee since 2002. McNamara will assume the role upon her departure.

Press release

Sue Ryder to accepting small WEEE

Londoners will be able to take unwanted electrical items to the capital’s ten Sue Ryder shops as part of a three-month trial.

The partnership between Material Focus’s Recycle Your Electricals campaign and the charity is supported by Currys, with all donors receiving a Currys £5 Cash for Trash voucher.

"We’re excited to work with Recycle Your Electricals on this trial and can’t wait to see the results,” said Wayne Hughes, deputy retail manager at Sue Ryder. “This will mean that we can start turning pre-loved electricals into funds to help support people dealing with grief or facing a terminal illness.”

Material Focus says there are 108 million unwanted electrical items unused in Londoners’ homes. Any working items smaller than a microwave will be PAT tested and sold in Sue Ryder stores and those not working will be collected by Currys and refurbished or used for spare parts.

Material Focus’s executive director Scott Butler said, if successful, the scheme would be rolled out across the UK.

Press release

Cocoa bean displays at Tesco

Mars Wrigley and Tesco are trialling new displays made using waste from cocoa bean shells and recycled paper.

Packaging Europe reports that the current trial is the second phase of a pilot scheme that began in 2021. In June and July, 765 ‘cocoa cardboard’ display units set to appear across England, Scotland and Wales featuring the Celebrations’ ‘Gift for Teacher’ promotion.

Mars Wrigley’s UK general manager said the company’s vision was to create a display material that has all the benefits of cardboard with “enhanced credentials”.

“The development of Cocoa Cardboard will enable us to drive the efficiency and effectiveness of display materials in a more circular way, benefiting our customer partner, consumers and the planet.”

Packaging News

Biffa DRS court case starts

Biffa has opened its legal case against the Scottish Government with a bid to recover some £55m of its investment in the aborted deposit return scheme for drinks containers, Scottish Television has reported.

Lawyers addressed judge Lord Clark at theCourtof Session over whether Biffa should be compensated for what it invested in the scheme and subsequent loss of the profit it would have received as logistics partner of the now defunct scheme administrator Circularity Scotland.

The firm began legal action last month as it believes the Scottish Government misrepresented the scheme when it assured Biffa it would go ahead.

Scotland’s DRS was scrapped after the UK Government declined a request for full exclusion from the Internal Market Act, which meant Scotland could not include glass in the scheme.

Legal argument in the court is due to resume later this year. The Scottish Government declined to comment.


EA extends order against access to illegal site

The Environment Agency has obtained a six month extension for the restriction orders at illegal waste sites at Hoads Wood and Eastchurch in Kent, which mean anyone entering without permission will be committing a criminal offence apart from contractors engaged to clear rubbish.

Environment secretary Steve Barclay last month issued a ministerial direction to the EA to clear up Hoads Wood, a Site of Special Scientific Interest, where up to 30,000 tonnes of waste has been dumped illegally.

Press release

Fire hits east London waste facility

London Fire Brigade sent eight fire engines and around 60 firefighters to a fire at a waste facility on Osier Way, Leyton.

It said some 50 tonnes of rubbish was alight, and residents were asked to remain indoors with doors and windows shut due to the large amount of smoke being produced. There were no reports of any injuries and the cause is not yet known.

Press release

Reform party denounces net zero targets

The Reform party has said net zero targets are “unachievable” and has instead called for more recycling.

It said in its election manifesto - which it termed “a contract”: “Net zero is pushing up bills, damaging British industries like steel, and making us less secure.

“We can protect our environment with more tree planting, more recycling and less single use plastics. New technology will help, but we must not impoverish ourselves in pursuit of unaffordable, unachievable global CO2 targets.”

Press release

WEEE collection breaks record in Ireland

Republic of Ireland consumers recycled a record-breaking 41,730 tonnes of electronic and electrical waste in 2023 Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Ireland’s annual report has shown. It said some 18.1 million appliances were collected for recycling last year.

The 41,730 tonnes of WEEE saved from landfill was up from the 40,767 tonnes collected in 2022, and included 2 million lighting items, 250,000 televisions and more than 500,000 a large household appliances.

There were also 750,000 vapes collected, after a national recycling scheme was implemented.

Chief executive Leo Donovan said: "Over the last two decades, WEEE Ireland has developed a highly efficient, free national takeback system, enabling our country to outperform EU recovery targets."

Press release

NWH slashes energy consumption

NWH Group has seen a 63.7% year-on-year reduction in energy consumption the waste management company has said.

Vehicle fuel usage accounts for 98% of the company’s emissions, and its car fleet has transitioned to electric, with a 63% reduction in carbon footprint for car usage.

The company described reducing the use of diesel in its HGV fleet as “challenging with many system barriers to change, including the cost and effectiveness of alternatives”. It has tried out an electric skip vehicle and has an electric articulated vehicle in its fleet.

Press release

Fortnightly collection saves Manx money

A revised waste management scheme that included moving to fortnightly black bin collections made savings of £177,000 in its first year for Douglas City Council on the Isle of Man, the BBC has reported.

Weekly collections ended in September 2022, since when recycling rates have quadrupled and incinerator costs have fallen from just over £1m to £803,523 over the same period the following year.

Garden waste costs though increased by £20,000 giving the combined £177,000 saving.


New name for European steel body

The Association of European Producers of Steel for Packaginghas changed its name from APEAL to Steel for Packaging Europe.

It was founded in 1986 and represents the five major European producers of packaging steel: Acciaierie d’Italia A.S, ArcelorMittal, Tata Steel, thyssenkrupp Rasselstein and US Steel Košice.

Secretary general Steve Claus said: “Offering a strong and versatile solution for the secure packaging of food and other goods, steel packaging plays a vital role in preserving products without need for refrigeration, extending shelf life for up to 5 years and reducing waste. These properties make it the model material for a circular economy.”

Press release

Newark and Sherwood win for Recresco

Glass recycling company Recresco has won a contract to recycle glass from Newark and Sherwood District Council. Around 30 tonnes per week of glass will travel to Recresco’s facility at Cwmbran, South Wales.

Kerbside glass recycling collections were introduced by the council for the first time in April, with collections taking place every eight weeks.

Matthew Finch, Newark and Sherwood’s director of communities and environment said: “We are very excited to see the introduction of kerbside glass collections. We look forward to working with Recresco to deliver them.

“The introduction of kerbside glass collections forms a valuable part of our long-term strategy to increase recycling rates and helps towards reaching our net zero goals.”

Recresco Business Development Manager, Fraser Macintyre said: “I am delighted to be working with Newark and Sherwood District Council to help them achieve their recycling and environmental targets.”

Press release

Hutchings to head renewables body

Trevor Hutchings has been appointed chief executive of the Association of Renewable Energy & Clean Technology. He succeeds Dr Nina Skorupska, who leaves after more than 10 years.

The association represents around 500 UK companies and organisations. It is urging an incoming government to support sustainable energy growth and low carbon innovation, in line with legally binding net zero carbon targets.

Hutchings was previously partner for sustainability at international consulting firm BIP. He has worked for WWF and for energy services firm Gemserv, Whitehall departments and the European Commission, including on policies to support renewables.

He said: “I take up my role as the country goes to the polls. Net zero is within our grasp and the actions taken by the next administration will determine whether we get the job done.”

Press release

Crews attend Chingford fire

Ten fire engines and around 70 fire fighters responded to a large fire at a waste and recycling centre in north London this week.

Crews from Edmonton, Enfield, Chingford, and surrounding fire stations attended the scene at Nobel Road in Enfield.At the height of the fire, which took four hours to get under control, approximately 500 tonnes of mixed waste in a single-storey enclosed bay was alight.

Fire fighters deployed a drone to give an aerial view and used a 32-metre ladder to attack the fire from above. They used a nearby brook as a water source.

Residents were advised to keep doors and windows closed, owing to thick smoke. The cause of the fire is not yet known.

Press release

SunEnviro buys Pips Skips

Suffolk-based waste management firm SunEnviro group has purchased Norfolk’s Pips Skips, expanding its presence in the east of England.

The firm says the acquisition will bring improved logistics and faster response times in Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire and Essex. They will also benefit from the services of SunDemolition.

SunEnviro managing director Mat Steward said the merger was “a major step forward” for the group.

“Our combined expertise and resources mean we can serve our communities more effectively than ever. It’s a win-win for everyone involved."

Since launching in 2020, beginning with SunSkips, the group has rapidly expanded and will soon be launching SunAggregates – a soil washing plant in Thetford, Norfolk.

Press release

FCC extends Hull contract

FCC Environment has secured an additional five years for its contracts with Hull City and East Riding of Yorkshire councils.

The company said it will now continue to provide services for 13 household waste recycling centres and three transfer loading station until 2030, after which the council will “fully understand the implications of the government’s emerging Resources and Waste Strategy”.

The £44m contract, initially signed in 2014, also includes commitment to develop delivery and reuse operations across the region, in partnership with Dove House.

Chief executive Steve Longdon said: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to continue working in partnership with Hull City Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council, delivering these key services to residents which represents value for public money”.

Press release

NLWA to give £100,000 for waste prevention

The North London Waste Authority (NLWA) will grant up to £100,000 to two waste prevention projects as part of the North London Community Fund.

The authority says the 2024 fund has been split into two stages for the first time, with 14 groups having already received up to £15,000 each. Applications are now being sought for projects related to WEEE and food waste.

“There are not-for-profit organisations of all sizes which share the Authority’saim of preserving resources and the environment for future generations,” said NLWA managing director Martin Capstick.

“These large awards are the first of their kind, and the Authority is very much looking forward to seeing innovative collaborations and partnerships which promote resource efficiency, minimise climate impacts and ultimately reduce unnecessary food and electrical waste.”

Press release

Bristol recyclers raise money for hospice

Bristol Waste has raised over £41,000 for a local hospice through its recycling centre and reuse shops.

Staff voted to partner with St. Peter’s Hospice and the company has since committed a significant portion of its reuse programme income to the hospice.

Interim managing director Dave Knight doing what’s right was one of the company’s values. “This commitment to social value includes our dedication to reuse and support for St Peter’s Hospice.”

“The rest of the profits are reinvested into Bristol and its services. I’d like to thank everyone who has donated to, shopped at or volunteered in our Reuse Shops.”

Bristol 24/7

Sainsbury changes to chicken & fish packaging

Supermarket chain Sainsbury’s expects to save 694 tonnes of plastic each year by selling its own-brand breaded chicken and salmon lines in cardboard trays.

Plastic packaging will be replaced with cardboard made from sugarcane pulp, with on-pack logos directing customers to products sold in recyclable packaging.

“We are now the first retailer to make the move to have recycled pulp card trays across all our by Sainsbury’s and Taste the Difference salmon products, enabling a whopping 70% plastic reduction,” said Claire Hughes, director of product and innovation.

Packaging Europe

LondonEnergy to use electric bulker

LondonEnergy, which provides waste and resource management services for north London, has taken delivery of a Volvo fully electric bulker as part of plans to decarbonise its fleet.

It said the vehicle could deliver a 92% CO2 equivalent saving when compared to its diesel counterpart over their full lifecycle. Volvo’s HGVs are the first to be produced with fossil-free steel and to utilise batteries which are manufactured at a plant powered by 100% renewable energy, LondonEnergy said.

The Volvo FM Electric tractor has a 6x2 configuration and is powered by five 90kWh lithium-ion batteries giving a total of 450kWh. It will be used to transfer material from the company’s waste transfer station in Islington to its EcoPark recycling and energy recovery facility in Edmonton.

Press release

First Mile helps theatre group boost recycling

Ambassador Theatre Group and recycling partner First Mile Team have delivered an increased recycling rate from 9% to 84% at a London theatre and the model will be extended to the group’s 30 venues.

It said it could save more than £30,000 annually in waste management costs through a more efficient use of services.

Working with bin provider Unisan Solutions, First Mile discovered that poor positioning and visibility of bins were affecting patrons’ ability to separate waste, leading to lower recycling rates and rubbish left on auditorium floors.

First Mile advised using mixed recycling, general waste and glass as the most effective streams, front-of-house, while at back-of-house other streams including cardboard and food waste were recommended.

Press release

Hughes becomes CIWM junior vice-president

The Chartered Institution of Wastes Management has elected Vicki Hughes as junior vice president, succeeding David Greenfield, who will become senior vice president later this month.

Hughes joined the CIWM board in 2019 and has more than 35 years’ experience in sales, marketing and business development having held senior roles at Hadfield Wood Recyclers and Enva. She is also a board member at the Wood Recyclers Association.

Press release

Powerday seeks to slash carbon emissions

London waste management and recycling company Powerday aims to reduce its Scope 1 and 2 carbon emissions by 4% by the end of this year, aligning with its net-zero commitment for 2040.

Scope 1 emission are those directly from vehicles and fuel, while scope 2 indirect emissions are from use of electricity.

Powerday is implementing initiatives that include transitioning seven sites to renewable energy and investing in battery storage technology to store energy from solar panels. It will also expand its electric skip vehicle fleet and invest in trials of vehicles running on hydrotreated vegetable oil.

Press release

Suez dives into wetsuit project

The Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Good Growth Programme has donated £116,000 to The Wave Project and waste-management company Suez to launch a reuse scheme for discarded wetsuits.

Some 380 tonnes of non-recyclable neoprene is generated each year from these, with half of this waste originating in Cornwall.

Wetsuit reuse bins will be placed at Cornwall Council’s household waste recycling centres, managed by Suez, with discarded suits taken to a workshop in Newquay to be cleaned and mended for resale. Any beyond repair will be converted to bags, pillows, mats and other products.

Press release

NHS board seeks clinical waste recycling savings

NHS Grampian hopes to save at least £150,000 per year by recycling more clinical waste, Herald Scotland has reported.

It spends around £125,000 a month on disposing of clinical waste, and the health board said every tonne of waste recycled saves £110 a year. Managers plan to boost its recycling ratefrom 46% to a target of 70% by 2025.

Herald Scotland

Altilium and Envato explore electric vehicle battery options

Altilium and Enva have formed a partnership for the collection and recycling of electric vehicle batteries in the UK.

They will jointly explore initiatives, including the safe handling and collection of batteries for recycling using Altilium’s EcoCathode process. Using advanced hydrometallurgical recycling processes, Altilium said it can recover more than 95% of the battery metals in a format that can be directly reused in the production of new batteries.

Altilium said the deal with Enva meant it will not need to establish its own collection infrastructure and would provide feed for its Teesside refinery, which it said is the only planned facility refining lithium-ion waste to cathode active materials.

Michael Sneath, managing director of Enva’s lubricants and batteries division, commented: “We are excited to partner with Altilium to develop a comprehensive and sustainable supply chain for EV battery recycling in the UK.”

Press release

Contract awarded to recycle marine structures

Marine engineering firm DeepOcean has been awarded a recycling contract from an unnamed operator in the UK continental shelf that includes the recovery of concrete mattresses, spools, flexibles, flowlines, jumpers, suction anchor, multiple structures and final debris clearance.

It said all recovered items will be transported and offloaded onshore for appropriate reuse, recycling, or disposal. The company said reuse options would be sought for all concrete mattresses.

Press release

Hills’ HVO move slashes CO2 emissions

Hills Waste Solutions has changed fuel from diesel to Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) for its Bristol fleet of HGVs.

The Wiltshire-based company offers specialist waste management and recycling services in the south-west. It is claimed that the move will reduce fuel-related Carbon (CO2) emissions by up to 90%. The HGVs are already ULEZ compliant, meeting the latest Euro 6 regulations for emissions.

Nathan Carr, Hills Waste Solutions’ divisional fleet manager commented: ‘We are committed to powering our operations in a more environmentally friendly way. That’s why we have chosen to go the extra mile and fuel our fleet with HVO.”

The HVO is supplied by Certas Energy a member of the Renewable Fuels Assurance Scheme (RFAS). Hills Waste Solutions is a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Hills Group

Press release

Keenan Recycling joins NHS Scotland framework

Food waste collection specialist, Keenan Recycling, has joined the NHS Scotland Recyclates and General Waste Management Framework.

The move will enable it to offer access food waste and recycling services to NHS Scotland’s Health Boards. The service will cover all aspects of food waste management, from collection to recycling into renewable energy through anaerobic digestion. It will include offering educational resources and workshops to staff, on food waste reduction, to help minimise waste at source.

Keenan Recycling collects food waste from every postcode in Britan. Its fleet includes hydrogen and HVO vehicles and operates from 19 depots.

NHS Scotland has a target of reaching net zero by 2040.

Press release

KCM brings waste management to Sheffield

Family-run Rotherham based waste management company, KCM is expanding its services into Sheffield. Launched by brothers Mark and Philip Hickling, it employs more than 140 staff.

The company provides household and trade waste collection skip and tipper hire, and confidential document, WEEE and hazardous waste disposal. Serving Rotherham, Sheffield, Doncaster, Barnsley, Chesterfield, Worksop and the surrounding areas it deals with an estimated 75,000 tonnes of waste every year at its Ginhouse Lane site.

It has acquired an abandoned two-acre waste disposal site at Cricket Inn Road in Sheffield, to bring its services to the heart of the city. The site was cleared by KCM, working with the Environment Agency and Sheffield Council.

A statement said: ‘As Cricket Inn Road becomes firmly established, we’ll be looking to bring new jobs to the city and region.”

Press release

Plastic recycler smashes targets

Eastbourne-based has achieved its recycling targets two years ahead of schedule.

The company has recycled 74 tonnes this year, the equivalent of 280 truckloads, exceeding its goal to recycle more than 1,500 tonnes of plastic by 2025. It now plans to hit 5,000 tonnes by the end of the decade. transports pallets and boxes at the end of their lives to its recycling centre in Belgium. Ninety-three percent of the products it supplies are made from 100% recycled plastic.

Jim Hardisty, managing director of said: “Our new goal of 5,000 tonnes by the end of the decade is ambitious, but we are confident in our ability to achieve it and to drive meaningful change in supply chains across the UK."

Press release

Vape bins marked to beat HWRC fires

Kirklees residents are being encouraged to use new vape recycling bins at household waste recycling centres to prevent fires.

The council’s contractor Suez said the impact of throwing away disposable vapes in residual waste or recycling bins was a significant problem and estimated from the materials recovery facility in Huddersfield that it had found some 1,000 vapes every day, with many more thought to be missed.

Nick Browning, general manager at Suez said, “When vapes are crushed by the compactor in a collection vehicle or damaged whilst being moved around one of our waste facilities, even batteries that have run out can retain enough energy to spark a fire, as seen at [local centre] Weaving Lane last week, which can endanger lives.”

Press release

Locals to resist Worksop plastics plant

Residents in Worksop are holding a public consultation meeting over concerns about plans for the Shireoaks Plastic Recycling Centre & Energy Recovery Facility, which were submitted last week, the Worksop Guardian has reported.

Lesley Deamer, of Shireoaks and Rhodesia Against Plastic Pyrolysis (SRAPP), said: “Our campaign group have devoted an enormous amount of time and effort in planning to put up the fiercest of fights to stop this proposal.”

A Nottinghamshire spokesperson said the application was being validated and would be subject to consultation and publicity.

Developer Refiniti said the plant would stop up to 20,000 tonnes a year of residual waste going to landfill and generate up to 2.5MW of electricity.

Worksop Guardian

Guernsey Waste hails disposable vape ban

A planned ban on disposable vapes in Guernsey has been welcomed by Guernsey Waste's minimisation and sustainability officer Douglas Button the BBC has reported.

Legislators last week voted in favour of new laws to stop people importing, selling and supplying disposable vapes.

Button said this would make the waste centre at Longue Hougue safer after several incidents of exploding lithium ion batteries. He said Guernsey Waste had processed about 50,000 disposable vapes since 2023.


Binit plans growth after investment secured

Waste collection and recycling company Binit plans to double in size after raising undisclosed investment funds.

It is based at Exeter Science Park, where it has recently moved to larger offices and intends to expand nationally from its south-west base.

Philippa Roberts, Binit’s chief executive, said: “Access to investment through an organisation like the FSE Group, which is based at the park, has also been important for us and an unexpected benefit was to have the opportunities to talk to other organisations based here who were going through the same process of raising finance.”

Each Binit bin has a unique QR code that takes its customers to its customer service platform. It also supports SMEs to share bins and provides access to a range of source-segregated recycling options.

Press release

Veolia works with picking robot

Veolia has unveiled a robotic arm at its Southwark integrated waste management facility from AI robotics business Recycleye.

The robot is being used to pick out paper, card, mixed plastics and beverage cartons from the aluminium line leaving just pure aluminium items for recycling.

It comprises a camera, a 6-axis robotic arm, pneumatics system and a computer box. The robot ‘picks’ items by using compressed air and a silicon gripper, then twists to face the correct sorting bin location and blows the item off the gripper and into the bin. It can pick between 35 and 50 items per minute,

Tim Duret, director of sustainable technology at Veolia said: “The data presented to us by the robot will give us a better understanding of common materials that are found in the wrong waste streams and how to prevent this, making sure our recycling is as effective as possible.”

Press release

Sortera launches UK brand

Sweden’s Sortera has launched UK operations following a merger of GBN Services and O’Donovan Waste Management, both of which it acquired last year.

The merger sees Sortera assume responsibility for six sites – Rochford, Harlow, Edmonton, Uxbridge, Tottenham and Wembley – previously owned and operated by GBN or O’Donovan.

Mark McCleery, UK managing director of Sortera, said: “By integrating theexpertise of GBN Services and O’Donovan Waste Management and implementingthe values that have made Sortera so successful in the Nordics, we’re excited to bringthe kind of innovative digital solutions, international sustainability insights andoperational excellence that address the evolving needs of the construction, recycling,and waste management industries.”

Sortera offers waste collection, recycling and resource recovery services and said that as it grows in the UK, it will look to streamline operations, reduce waste generation, and promote circular economy principles.

Press release

Funds raised to progress chemical recycling for plastics

DeepTech Recycling has raised £800,000 in investment in addition to £1.3m raised in in December to support a development phase for its pilot plant for dealing with chemical recycling of plastics.

The company is a special purpose vehicle that acquired most assets of the former Recycling Technologies from an administrator,

It said it has developed a chemical recycling solution for different types of plastic waste.

Press release

Aggregates firm invests in incinerator bottom ash work

Johnsons Aggregates has made an undisclosed six-figure investment in new technology and equipment for its incinerator bottom ash recycling work, Business East Midlands has reported.

It handles more than 700,000 tonnes a year of waste and quarried material, which it said is projected to rise to 1.0m tonnes in the next 24 months.

The new investment is in PV panels across the two largest processing sites, generating some 700kwh of energy annually. It also plans to use more biofuels and electric vehicles, electric shovels and hydrogen fuelled vehicles,

Business East Midlands

News round-up June 2024 (2024)
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