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Managing Hazardous Wastes for Clients since 2005.
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By Richard Tj
In reducing the volume of waste, the waste hierarchy is aiming to prevent its production in the first place. When first introduced, a common mis-conception was that it implied Compacting the waste to reduce it’s volume.
The re-use of consumer, industrial & business goods in their existing form offers a second tier solution to the reduction of post consumer waste.
Although not officially included in the relevant Acts, technical guidance or Legislation of the UK, re-purpose fits in just about here and implies the changing of an item to fulfill another purpose.
• Charity Donations (Second Hand Clothing, Electronics, Sporting Goods, Business Equipment, Books, Records, CDs)
• Re-distribution through Social/ Community Schemes (Similar to the above, athough of direct benefit as opposed to a way of raising funds).
• Hand-Me-Downs: Something that many families are familiar with, whether an old toy, clothes, books, furniture or electrical/ electronic equipment.
Note; Some HWRC (Household Waste & Recycling) Sites employ re-use for certain wastes deposited with them. Permitted facilities are allowed to employ repair and refurbishment, raising some waste items back up the heirarchy into re-use.
Recycling is applied where post consumer or C&I (Commercial and Industrial) goods have reached the end of their working life. Their recycling is carried out at specifically licensed waste management sites through a process of dis-assembly, shredding, shearing or crushing, before being passed through a series of stages that ultimately aim to recover materials.
These processes all aim to push wastes towards the classification “end of wastes”
Such sites include:
ELV: End of Life Vehicles
WEEE: Waste Electrical & Electronic Recycling
MRF: Materials recycling facilities sort and pre-treat household and some C&I wastes, separating them for further recovery.
Transfer & treatment: Applies rudimentary treatment to wastes (segregation & disassembly) prior to passing the “outputs” onto more specialized facilities (includes Skip Hire, Bin collection, bin lorries)
Scrap Yards: Segregate and collect various different Waste Metals for further treatment/ refining.
Refuse Derived fuels (RDF): used in the generation of electricity from Incineration. CHP plants (Combined Heat and Power) offer a more efficient solution, collecting heat as well as power (Electricity) Anerobic Digestion (AD): Composting green waste anerbobically to produce Methane for use as a Gas.
Pyrolysis: The heating of wastes in an inert gas, releasing fuels in the form of both Gas and Oil.
Disposal applies to wastes that cannot be recovered or re-used or where TEEP has been applied but the cost of segregation, transport and treatment exceeds the beneficial costs of recycling or recovery. Such circumstances arise where local authorities lack access to local facilities able to make use of the particular waste material.
About the Author: Richard Anthony Johnson
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