Zero waste to landfill
In February 2011 the Waste (England and Wales) Regulations introduced the legal requirement for organisations to apply the waste hierarchy when dealing with waste. This means organisations must take all reasonable steps to prevent and reduce waste and where waste does arise demonstrate that they have dealt with it in the most environmentally friendly way possible. In Scotland they have announced a landfill ban on municipal biodegradable waste by 2020 as part of the Zero Waste Regulations. This is the first ban of its kind in the UK and could lead to other countries following suit. Coupled with this is the increasing demand in the UK for organisations to demonstrate their environmental commitments. A key way in which this can be achieved is the diversion of waste from landfill.
What is zero waste to landfill ?
Zero waste to landfill is where no waste streams go to landfill. Instead, materials are diverted to other uses, for example:
- Cardboard goes to paper mills
- Glass goes to be re-melted
- Plastic goes to be made into new packaging
- Food waste goes to composting
Waste which cannot be re-used or recycled is recovered via methods such as energy from waste, incineration, plasmosis and gasification.
When implementing a zero waste to landfill strategy you will need to make sure you have a full audit trail of where your material ends up to satisfy yourselves that none of your waste has ended up in landfill. For example, if waste is sent for incineration the resulting ashes can sometimes be sent to landfill which means you should not declare yourself as a zero waste to landfill company.
What are the benefits?
The benefits you can achieve from implementing a zero waste to landfill strategy include:
- On-going cost savings
- Revenue generation
- Meeting legal requirements of waste regulations
- Positive PR opportunities
- Improved environmental performance
- Competitive advantage over others in your industry who aren't zero waste to landfill
If you would like help to implement a zero waste to landfill strategy, or if you want to become third-party verified as a zero waste to landfill company, please contact our friendly team at Valpak on 03450 682 572 or complete our enquiry form.