Working together to manage waste
26 November 2018
A partnership approach between cleaning companies and waste management experts can provide real value-added service to clients, says Stephen Hill from Grundon Waste Management
In many respects, cleaning companies share the front line of good waste management practice with organisations like ourselves.
By working together, we can drive innovation and change to deliver customer goals such as zero waste to landfill, increasing recycling, and reducing the amount of non-recyclable general waste. Those are issues that all our customers should be taking seriously.
I am often surprised by how many organisations still have traditional under desk bins and how a general ‘black bag’ waste bin will be a repository for everything from banana skins and half-eaten sandwiches to old ink cartridges and waste paper.
And that example also throws up another reason for working with waste experts – in a commercial environment, discarded ink cartridges amongst many other everyday items are considered as hazardous waste. Very few people however, (not surprisingly), understand the do’s and don’ts of such compliance issues.
Bringing in the experts
As waste management experts, we ensure that our customers stay on top of relevant legislation and we have all the correct procedures and licenses in place to guarantee the correct disposal of all types of waste.
Peartree Cleaning Services is just one of the cleaning companies we work in partnership with, undertaking activities such as waste audits and agreeing waste goals and objectives with their clients.
Our audits include reviewing the type of waste produced, analysing existing segregation (if any), the types of bins currently used, and recommending necessary changes.
We explain the different methods of disposal available, such as diverting waste from landfill by sending it to our Energy from Waste (EfW) facilities, where it generates ‘green’ electricity for export to the National Grid; and also discuss how better to improve recycling opportunities.
For example, at our Materials Recovery Facilities (MRFs) mixed recycling, such as plastics, paper and card, is efficiently separated and sent for reprocessing, helping to boost customers’ recycling targets.
We manage the destruction of confidential waste and the safe disposal of hazardous waste items which, as already mentioned, will include typical office items such as aerosols, ink cartridges, light bulbs, batteries and cleaning fluids.
Our dedicated food waste collection service diverts food waste away from landfill and sends it instead to Anaerobic Digestion (AD) facilities, where it is processed to produce ‘green’ electricity and bio-fertiliser.
In addition, as an innovative and proactive business, we are always looking for new waste streams which can be recovered, reprocessed or recycled. Our new Paper Cup Recycling Service is just one example of this, as it helps to tackle the ‘mountain’ of coffee cups thrown away every day.
Employee training, events such as Waste Awareness Days, and visits to our facilities are also part of our portfolio, as we believe people will be much more engaged if they can see and understand the benefits of improved waste management.
And, most importantly, we provide monthly statistics and reporting to help customers understand how the changes are benefiting them and boosting their sustainability commitment.
Tips and advice on how to identify the best waste management partner
· Find a reputable and qualified waste management partner who has a good track record and offers a full range of in-house waste management services
· Ask for recent testimonials
· Find out about auditing, reporting and training procedures
· Ask about how they will ensure your clients are kept fully up-to-date with all the latest compliance issues and regulations
· Find out if you can visit their premises (possibly with your client) in order to understand how they work
· Ask what they think they can do for your client
· Check they are members of professional organisations, such as the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM)