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Tips for reducing office waste

clip_image002Much is spoken of about how we can improve recycling rates at home, however, much less so is commented on how we can reduce the impact of waste from our places of work. Recycling is often low down the priority list for our businesses but doing so can not only help the environment but can also save you money and give you something to brag about to your clients and customers.

Here are some simple and easy to adopt tips that you can use to reduce wastage in the workplace.

1 – Turn off all of your electronic items at the end of the day rather than leaving them on standby overnight

2 – Set your computer monitors to switch to standby during periods of inactivity

3 – Switch to energy efficient lightbulbs

4 – Take advantage of natural light and leave artificial lighting off for as long as is possible without impacting on your work

5 - Recycle paperwork but try and move towards electronic communications wherever possible through online systems, phone calls and emails. Paperless is the way forward.

6 – When you do have to print try and use products like recycled paper, refillable ink printer cartridges and opt for manufacturers that use non-toxic chemicals. Better yet use one communal printer rather than several around the office.

7 – When ordering food or sourcing food for your office try and shop locally. Not only are you supporting other local businesses, but you’ll also be reducing your carbon footprint.

8 – Be flexible with working. If an employee can work from home, car pool or use public transport to begin their working day then you should try and encourage it to reduce emissions

9 – Allow casual attire during the summer. There’s nothing worse than being stuck in stuffy suit and tie during a baking summer’s day. Allowing more casual clothing during the summer can not only keep your employees happy but also reduce the need for expensive and resource intensive air-cooling systems.

10 – In the bathroom opt for recyclable products such as non-single use plastic handwash and paper towels.

11 – Retain packaging such as boxes and mailers for reuse later down the line

12 – Waste sorting is essential but in a big workplace this can be time consuming. Delegate up tasks between several members of staff to even out the workload.

13 – Enquire about recycling and green policies with suppliers carefully before choosing to strike up a relationship – otherwise all your efforts could be of no use

If you’re looking for advice and help with creating a thrifty and eco-friendly waste policy then speak to LSPS today. We offer a complete waste disposal management package to businesses and offices in Leicestershire to help them meet their needs and adhere to regulations. We also have a secure shredding service to dispose of confidential waste. To find out more please contact us on 0800 083 7807.

24-hour plastic-free challenge – could you do it?

lsps blog 111According to research from the environmental charity Greenpeace – nine in ten people asked admitted that they were concerned about plastic waste and the effect that it has on our oceans.

Single-use plastics are often dubbed an ‘unavoidable’ part of our everyday lives. However, from coffee cups and plastic straws to single-use carrier bags there have been plenty of victories in recent years to help curb the mountains of plastic making their way to our oceans, polluting water sources and harming marine life.

Environmental charity Friends Of The Earth is encouraging people to go one-step further and take on a new challenge called Drastic On Plastic. This experiment asks those taking part to take a pledge to avoid single-use plastics for a 24hour period, or as long as they can.

The idea is to start your timer on your phone and leave it running until you use your first piece of single use plastic such as a packaging on food. Once this happens you stop your timer and record your findings on their website. These findings will help to highlight the difficulties people face in reducing plastic waste and where stronger action is needed. Those interested in taking part can register here: foe.uk/0702-timer-challenge.

Friends of the Earth’s plastic-free campaigner Julian Kirby said:

“Lots of companies have made proud claims about reducing plastic - but just how easy is it to avoid plastic bags, cups, bottles and packaging in our everyday lives?

“Take the plastic challenge and find out how long you can go before you have to use an item of throw-away plastic.

“And by letting us know which bit of unwanted plastic ended your challenge, it will help us put pressure on retailers and manufacturers to reduce the waves of pointless plastic pollution that blights our environment and harms our wildlife.

“It’s time for the government to get drastic on plastic - and that’s why we need a new law to ensure tougher action to end the plastic pollution crisis.”

Here at LSPS, recycling is of great importance to us and we help businesses and individuals all across Leicestershire to reduce the amount of their waste that ends up at landfill sites. Our Waste Transfer Station is open to traders and has an extensive range of state-of-the-art equipment.

To find out how about we can help with your waste disposal needs please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information.

Tips for a greener bathroom at home

lsps blog 110 - tips for a greener bathroom at homeFrom toothpaste tubes and wet wipes to shampoo bottles – lots of our household waste originates from the bathroom. However, with less than 10% of plastic products ever being recycled, it’s important to brush up on exactly what can and cannot be recycled from our homes and the bathroom is no exception.

1 – Bulk buy

One key way to reduce your plastic waste in the bathroom is to bulk by products. Rather than buying a new bottle of shampoo once a month you should buy a larger bottle that will last you longer. Some brands even use recycled plastic for their packaging so be sure to study the packaging closely.

2 – Try alternative dental products

Dental products like toothbrushes and tooth paste tubes are perhaps the biggest offender when it comes to plastic waste. The complex makeup of these products and varying materials make it hard to recycle so a large proportion end up in landfill each year. To try and combat this trend there are many new products appearing on the market that use simple materials that are easy to recycle. Look out for Bamboo and other wooden toothbrushes which are compostable and biodegradable.

3 – Switch to solids

While you may want to make your bathroom greener – this doesn’t mean you have to compromise on your beauty regime. There are ways of making slight adjustments to your daily habits that can have a profound impact. Take shampoo for instance. Shampoo bottles are often made from single-use plastics that are hard to recycle. A much eco-friendlier option is to use sulphate-free bars of soap. You can even buy soap bars made specifically for washing and nourishing your hair.

4 – Dual bins

While having two bins in our kitchens has become a common practice in the UK – helping to raise household recycling rates, many of us are yet to adopt this same system in our bathrooms. This means that in the rush of daily life we often lump all our waste in together and end up with no time to separate out the recyclables and non-recyclables. Having two bins takes away this headache.

Here at LSPS, recycling is of great importance to us and we help businesses and individuals all across Leicestershire to reduce the amount of their waste that ends up at landfill sites. Our Waste Transfer Station is open to traders and has an extensive range of state-of-the-art equipment.

To find out how about we can help with your waste disposal needs please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information.

Recycling symbols for packaging explained

One of the biggest barriers to improving recycling rates in the UK is an understanding of the often-complex systems, schemes and signage involved. Most people are keen to make a difference by recycling their household and daily waste – but the actual methods of doing so can be confusing and misleading.

Here are some of the most commonly used symbols on products you’ll see in shops and in the supermarkets to help point you in the right direction.

Widely recycled

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This green symbol with a clockwise arrow means that the item you are looking at is easily and widely recycled. This means you can be confident that your purchase will go on to be reused after it’s served its purpose for you.

There are several variations of this symbol – some may have extra instructions and caveats attached such as ‘rinse’, ‘rinse/lid on’ or ‘flatten’. Be careful to follow these instructions as often forgetting to remove a cap or wash out a jar for instance can lead to the item being rejected from the recycling process.

Check locally

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This symbol featuring the same clockwise arrow but with a black background means that between 25-75% of local authorities will collect and recycle this form of packaging but that there may be a chance they don’t – so you should check on your local authority website for clarification before putting it in your recycling bin.

Not Yet Recycled

lsps blog 109 - image 3

The Not Yet Recycled symbol is a sign that (as the name suggests) this particular item can not yet be recycled. This might include a form of packaging like crisp packets. However, just because the item is not recyclable doesn’t mean that you can’t reuse it yourself. So, try and think of a creative or useful way that you can avoid sending the item to landfill.

Other variations

Other variations of the symbol include ‘Widely Recycled at Recycling Centres’ informing you to take the item to your local recycling centre, ‘Recycle With Bags At Larger Stores’ which means some supermarkets will take in the item (wrapping from toilet rolls, magazine wraps, etc) and often some items won’t yet feature any recycle information. In those circumstances you should seek clarification either with the product manufacturer or your local authority for details on what to do.

Here at LSPS, recycling is of great importance to us and we help businesses and individuals all across Leicestershire to reduce the amount of their waste that ends up at landfill sites. Our Waste Transfer Station is open to traders and has an extensive range of state-of-the-art equipment.

To find out how about we can help with your waste disposal needs please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information.

How to dispose of scrap metal the legal way

Smiling worker wearing a high-visibility vest in a junkyardSelling your scrap metal can earn you a decent return, but it’s important to know the rules regarding what is and what isn’t legal, as falling on the wrong side of the law could lead to hefty fines and penalties.

Here’s our run down of some important rules you should follow.

First of all, while you can make money from selling on your scrap metal, it is important that you source it from your own home or your car. If you want to go out and collect scrap metal from other people, then you require a license such as a mobile collector’s license or a site collector’s license. This is the case even for your friends, family and neighbours. You should also never try and get your scrap metal from public land, abandoned sites, buildings or bins and skips as this is deemed as theft.

If you are approached by someone offering to buy your scrap metal from you then ask to see their license. If they can’t prove that they have one, then you should refuse. Without going to a reputable and fully licensed trader, you have no way of knowing whether you are getting a good deal and whether your scrap will be disposed of in a legal way. Income from illegal scrap metal activities has regularly been linked to organised crime and scrap metal theft costs the UK economy over £220m each year.

In order to follow the latest government rulings, all scrap metal deals now have to be above-board and traceable. In practice this means that no-cash can be paid for scrap metal trades. Instead, bank transfers and cheques are now the chosen method of exchange.

Here at LSPS we are one of Leicestershire’s largest independent ferrous and non-ferrous metal recyclers. We are fully licensed, offer extremely competitive prices in line with industry rates and can collect larger amounts of scrap metal directly from you.

To find out more contact LSPS today on 0800 083 7807 or simply call in with your scrap metal. We are open Monday – Friday between 07:30 and 16:30 and Saturdays from 7:30 until midday.

Reverse vending machines helping UK shoppers to earn from recycling

LSPS Blog 80Customers at Iceland supermarkets have earned an equivalent of more than £30,000 by recycling their used plastic bottles in the first trial of reverse vending machines in a major national supermarket.

The scheme, pioneered by the Iceland supermarket chain, aims to reward shoppers with vouchers worth 10p for every deposit of a plastic bottle bought at their shop in an effort to reduce plastic waste. Encouraging figures show that a total of 311,500 plastic bottles were recycled to date across stores in Deeside, Wolverhampton, Mold, Fulham and Musselburgh.

The trial by the frozen food retailer was the first of such schemes but has now been followed by similar efforts in Co-Op stores, Morrisons supermarkets and several national music festivals this summer.

Commenting on the scheme, Richard Walker, Managing Director at Iceland, said: “We’ve gained hugely valuable insights into both consumer interest and the functionality of the schemes, and it’s clear from the results that consumers want to tackle the problem of plastic head on, and would be in support of a nationwide scheme.

“We’ll be using these findings to inform future Iceland initiatives, and will be sharing our findings with DEFRA and across the industry to ensure any nationwide roll-outs are comprehensive and effective in our goal of tackling the issue of single-use plastics.”

Iceland has a strong commitment to positive change for the environment and was also the first UK supermarket to remove palm oil from all of its own label ranges. Palm oil has been linked heavily to the destruction of habitats of endangered species such as orangutans.

It is currently estimated that more than 12 million tonnes of plastic enters the world’s oceans each year, which has a disastrous impact on marine life and also enters the food chain through seafood.

Here at LSPS, recycling is of great importance to us and we help businesses and individuals all across Leicestershire to reduce the amount of their waste that ends up at landfill sites. Our Waste Transfer Station is open to traders and has an extensive range of state-of-the-art equipment.

To find out how about we can help with your waste disposal needs please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information.

Walkers launches crisp packet recycling scheme

Packet of CrispsWalkers Crisps has begun a recycling campaign for their crisp packets following pressure from consumers and environmental groups.

Walkers became the focus of an internet campaign behind the hashtag #PacketInWalkers. The campaign on social media encouraged consumers to publish pictures of themselves posting empty crisp packets to the Walkers company after photos emerged of crisp packets more than 30 years old found entirely intact – highlighting the need for new environmentally friendly packaging materials.

The social media campaign asked members of the public to send used Walkers crisps packets back to the Leicester-based manufacturer with the freepost address attached on a piece of paper and taped to the packet. In turn this forced the Royal Mail to ask protesters to put the packets in envelopes before posting, after problems arose at their sorting offices with loose crisp packets.

In response to the campaign, Walkers Crisps has officially launched a new recycling scheme aimed at dealing with the problem. Crisp packets can now be sent to the company TerraCycle who will help recycle them after they have been dropped off at special collection points across the country. The campaign will allow for all brands of crisp packets – not just Walkers.

Collection points close to Leicester can be found at the following locations:

- Visit Leicester, 51 Gallowtree Gate, Leicester, L1 5AD

- Wilson’s Convenience Store, 26 Ratby Road, Groby, LE6 0GG

- 7 Melba Way, Birstall, Leicester, L24 4GT

Ian Ellington, general manager of Walker’s parent company PepsiCo UK commented on the scheme:

"This is another important step towards our ambition to make all of our packaging 100 per cent recyclable, compostable or biodegradable by 2025. This is the first crisp packet recycling scheme in the UK and it will only work if everyone gets collecting and sending in, which is why we've made the scheme as simple as possible and free."

Click here for more details on the scheme: https://www.walkers.co.uk/recycle

Here at LSPS, recycling is of great importance to us and we help businesses and individuals all across Leicestershire to reduce the amount of their waste that ends up at landfill sites. Our Waste Transfer Station is open to traders and has an extensive range of state-of-the-art equipment.

To find out how about we can help with your waste disposal needs please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information.

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