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Recycling at theme parks

Recycling at theme parksTheme parks attracts thousands of tourists in the UK. They provide thrills and entertainment, making them a great choice for a day out. However, despite them being a great destination, the number of guests can lead to a massive amount of waste. Here we discuss what theme parks can do to ensure as much waste is recycled as possible.

Bins
It is a simple thing to implement, but planning is still involved when it comes to placing recycle bins around the park. When people are busy having a great time, recycling is sometimes quite low on their priorities, so theme parks have a responsibility to ensure it is as easy as possible for guests to recycle. Have a sufficient number of bins so that guests can always easily access one. Target high volume areas (around toilets and food areas) as this will be where the most waste will be. Also ensure you have bins throughout the queuing areas of the park. Customers do not want to have to leave the queue in order to get rid of their rubbish and this will lead to more littering. Also, ensure your bins are consistent. Use the same symbols and style of bin throughout the theme park so customers can easily identify them.

Lighting
Theme parks require a lot of lighting, especially on the rides themselves. Being able to use LED lights and eco-friendly light bulbs wherever possible is essential. It can be complicated to set up but having a renewable energy program in place will benefit you in the long run. You can also convert food waste to generate energy for electricity.

Food and drink
Water is a necessity for everyone, so this is a large area you should combat to ensure unnecessary waste is not created. Try and encourage customers to bring their own reusable bottles by providing free water fountains around the park. This is both convenient to the customer, avoids single use plastic bottles being sold in large quantities and will significantly reduce your plastic waste.
At your food stations, try and use reusable cutlery if possible. If not, try and use cutlery and napkins that have been produced from recycled materials. If possible, try and team up with a local charity and get left over food donated to those in need.

Greenery
Not only is greenery great for the environment, it helps improve the look of the theme park and improves the mood of guests. Use trees effectively around seating areas to create natural and tranquil areas for guests to have a sit down and relax. Using greenery to do this avoids you having to have as many indoor areas that require lighting and air conditioning.

Staff
It is not just about the customers at the theme park and worrying about the waste they create. You also need to consider the staff at the park. You need to provide enough training on your recycling program and ensure that all members of staff are on board and contribute to the cause. Get them to try and bring their own packed lunch, car share if possible and only use disposable products that you actually need. If your staff are fully behind the recycling program, they can help ensure the guests follow the rules as well.

Rewards
Consider rewarding customers who help with the recycling program. You can get vending machines that reward people for recycling and returning their bottles. If customers bring their own cups for hot drinks, offer a small discount. There are many ways you can use small rewards to encourage the behaviour you desire.

Paper
There are a few small changes you can make to reduce the amount of paper your theme park produces. Ensure customers can access their tickets online and just show a barcode or QR code at the entrance as opposed to having to physically print their tickets. Also, have an app for your theme park. Not only will this stop you having to print and hand out thousands of maps each day, it also helps improve the customer experience as the app will not only show them a map, but it can show them the best routes to get to the rides they want and also real time waiting times so they can plan their day more efficiently.

Some success stories
There are many theme parks that are already doing a lot in order to try and reduce the amount of waste they create. Disney has been known for trying to tackle this problem for years. Due to the sheer volume of guests that visit Disney theme parks each day, it is a massive challenge to tackle waste. They recycle over a dozen materials which equates to thousands of tons each year. They used recycled energy to cool their parks and even recycle human waste from their theme parks and hotels so that it can be used as fertilisers on farms. They have also teamed up with a charity and donated used soaps and bottles of shampoos from their hotels which are recycled and used to create hygiene products for people in need around the world. SeaWorld removed all single use plastic from their theme parks including single use plastic bags and plastic straws.

A Copenhagen park called Tivoli started a recycling deposit-based program back in 1998 where customers paid a deposit for a cup which they then got refunded once they returned the cup at the end of the day. This simple scheme has effectively been used across theme parks, festivals and sports events.

Merlin Theme Parks (which includes Alton Towers, Legoland, Thorpe Park and more) have also teamed up with Coca Cola. The initiative offers half price entry to the group’s theme parks in exchange for empty plastic bottles being handed in to get recycled.

From the examples above, theme parks are trying hard to combat the issue of waste. Some of the larger parks are putting in large initiatives to combat this problem but there is also room for improvement. Also, some theme parks are potentially lagging and should follow the example of others to ensure they are doing as much as possible to reduce waste. The first thing any theme park should do is carry out a waste audit. From here, they can identify which areas they are struggling with and have these as a priority.
 
To find out more about how we can help you with your waste disposal needs, please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information.

25 ways to reduce rubbish in offices

Computer keyboard with recycling symbolIt is important that in this day and age, all companies try and cut down on the amount of waste they produce and recycle as much as possible. The number of green businesses and green offices are growing, but some companies are still lagging. This blog discusses some easy things offices can implement quickly and simply in order to start reducing office waste.

Packaging
1.    When purchasing any supplies for the office, try and choose options that do not include a lot of excess packaging. If packaging is unavoidable, try and recycle
2.    Speak to suppliers about delivering goods in returnable containers rather than loads of packaging. This is becoming more popular, so it is worth asking your supplier in advance
3.    Bulk buy coffee, tea and sugar supplies. This will stop staff bringing in their own or buying drinks from coffee shops. Buying in bulk also cuts down on the packaging used
4.    Provide a filtered water system to cut down on plastic bottles in the office

Food and drink
5.    Ask your employees to use reusable cutlery/ silverware rather than bringing in disposable plastic cutlery. If your company can provide staff with cutlery in the staffroom, they will be less likely to bring in disposable items
6.    Use reusable cups and mugs. Ask employees to bring their own or provide them as a gesture of good will. They are reasonably cheap and will mean you will significantly cut down on the number of disposable coffee cups you need to get rid of. They are notoriously difficult to recycle
7.    Consider buying a composting bin to place in the staff kitchen area. It’s a great way to avoid as much waste going to landfill as possible. By putting food waste in a separate compost bin, you can have it collected by a company or use the compost yourself if you have any green space or garden
8.    Also get your employees to try and bring their own lunches in their own containers or provide them with plates and bowls. This will cut back significantly on the amount of food packaging you have to throw away
9.    Invest in tea towels rather than providing staff with paper towels.

Paper
10.    Wherever possible, store files digitally. Although this is standard practice for many companies, there are a lot of businesses still heavily reliant on printed copies
11.    Change the settings on all computers to automatically print double sided
12.    Encourage your staff to make amends to documents digitally rather than printing off several drafts of documents
13.    If you can, re use scrap pieces of paper, envelopes, folders and other stationary whenever possible
14.    Buy lighter weight paper
15.    Leave messages for colleagues by sending them emails rather than writing messages down
16.    Before printing documents, look at the margins and line spacing on your documents to ensure you are using the space as efficiently as possible
17.    Recycle unwanted paper and shred any confidential information. Shredded paper can also be recycled, so ensure this always happens.
18.    Try and take a tablet or laptop into meetings to take notes on rather than pen and paper
19.    If you do have to print, try and avoid printing in colour
20.    Store important staff information such as policies and notifications in a central location on the computer system that people can access rather than printing several copies of each update.

Office Equipment
21.    Make the most out of all of your ink cartridges. Rather than buying new ones when they are finished, look into buying refills instead to cut down on the amount of plastic you are using
22.    When buying electrical equipment for your office always think quality over price. Although you may have to pay slightly more, going for higher quality equipment should last you longer and will therefore be more cost efficient but also reduce the waste created when you replace it
23.    If you only use certain equipment occasionally, see if you can hire it instead of buying it outright
24.    Ensure you dispose of your electrical equipment in the right way, such as batteries
25.    Make sure you have clearly labelled bins throughout the office and make it as easy for staff to recycle as possible. Get rid of individual bins at people’s desk as it will make them head over to the main bins and are therefore more likely to split their rubbish into the correct bins.

Some offices have managed to become completely paperless. Although this may not be achievable for some companies, the list above shows that there are a variety of things you can implement to ensure you are going in the right direction. The main thing is to implement waste cutting techniques and ensure your staff stick to them. It will take some time for staff to get used to all the new initiatives, but once they have got into a routine, you should see a significant drop in your office waste. Trying an incentive and rewarding the member of staff who reduces their waste the most is also an effective tactic.

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

11 ways to stay safe around skips

loaded dumpster near construction siteHiring a skip is a quick and easy way to get rid of the rubbish you have been storing in your home or business. Although you might not think that hiring a skip is particularly dangerous, if you are not sensible and careful during the process it could lead to potential injuries. Here are a few tips to make sure you and other people remain safe whilst you hire and use your skip.  A lot of the tips are common sense, however if you are in a rush, even the simplest things can be forgotten and that’s when things can become risky.

1.    When preparing for your skip, ensure you are ready for the skip’s arrival. Remember that your skip needs to be placed on a stable, flat surface that is free from any obstructions. Ensure all vehicles have been removed from your drive if this is where you are planning your skip to go. Also make sure if you are placing the skip on the side of a road that the height and position of the skip will not obscure the view of any cars driving past or reversing.

2.    Ensure your skip can be delivered with ease. Remove any cars or obstacles that could stop the delivery truck accessing your property.

3.    Once your skip has been delivered, do NOT try and move it. It is important you know where you want the skip in advance, as once it is placed on the ground you will not be able to move it yourself. They are extremely heavy and attempting to move a skip can not only cause you injury, it can damage the surface it is placed on.

4.    When the skip is being delivered, keep your young children and any pets inside the house. They can be extremely inquisitive to new things and want to get involved but it can be dangerous if they get in the way. Small children and pets will not be easily visible to the driver delivering your skip.

5.    Be careful when filling your skip. Always check there are no small animals, pets or children that have climbed in the skip before you place heavy items into it.

6.    Never put hazardous waste in skips or any other item that is not suitable for skips. Check online or contact us for the full list of items you should not place in skips if you are unsure. Gas cylinders, paint, white goods and batteries are all good examples of what you cannot place in skips.

7.    Be careful when placing heavy items in the skip. Always lift with your knees and always ask for help if you need it. Skips have really high sides so although you may be able to lift the item, being able to lift it high enough to place into the skip can be another matter. It can cause back injuries and lasting damage, so you must know your limits.

8.    Don’t overfill your skip. If your skip is overfilled it may not be collected as it would be unsafe to drive on roads with a skip that full. Each skip has a weight limit that you need to stick to. Even if you are not exceeding the weight limit, if you have overfilled your skip there is a chance items could fall out and cause damage.

9.    Have a system when loading your skip. Don’t just throw it all in at once. If you take a minute to think about how to load it properly, you will be able to fit more in it and ensure nothing can fall out.

10.    Always think about the public. This is slightly less of a risk if the skip is on your private property but if you have it placed on a street you need to ensure that it is not getting in anyone’s way. You may want to consider hazard lights to indicate to people that the skip is there.

11.    Monitor your skip, especially if it is on a public street. You need to make sure that other people are not taking advantage and using your skip as well. Not only is this rude, they could be putting hazardous material in the skip which does not belong there.

All these tips are easy to stick to and by following these rules, you will not only stay safe around skips, you will be able to make the most out of your skip hire.

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

Top recycling tips at home

Recycling at homeRecycling is a major consideration for us and we are dedicated to recycling everything possible to reduce waste going to landfill sites. When we collect your skips, we will separate your rubbish in order to recycle as much of the waste as possible. However, there are many elements of recycling that you yourself can do at home as well to cut down on your normal household waste. Here are few of our top tips.

Tip #1 Donate to charity
A great way to reduce waste is to consider donating your clothes and other household items to charity. Just because you no longer want the item, doesn’t mean someone else will not benefit from it. As long as they are in good enough condition, you should take your clothes to your local charity shop. With donation bags distributed to homes, stores across the country and donation banks at a lot of supermarkets, there are many ways you can give your unwanted clothes to someone in need.

Tip #2 Repurpose items
This requires a bit of creativity but it’s great when you can discover another use for an item that you would otherwise have just thrown away. For example, you can use old woks, pots and painted cans and create plant pots for outside, or you can use the material from old clothes to create a blanket. The possibilities are endless.

Tip #3: Don’t waste leftovers
When it comes to food, try and reduce the amount you throw away. A lot of leftovers can make lovely meals. If you have slightly older vegetables that need using, make a soup rather than automatically throwing them away. Composting is another great option for food waste. It reduces your household waste and helps you keep your garden healthy.

Waste is a problem that is continuing to increase, so by doing small things to try and reduce this waste wherever possible we can collectively make a huge impact.

Tip #4: Make some money
Even if you no longer want some items, they could be seen as valuable to other people who will be willing to pay for it. All it takes is for you to give up some time to list the items online to sell and you will be surprised how much money you can make. If you have old electrical items that no longer work as well, you can take them to specialised shops that may buy them off you and restore them to resell.

Tip #5: Get the whole family involved
The best way to ensure you continue recycling wherever possible is getting the whole family involved so recycling and reducing waste becomes part of your daily life. If you have young children, then set them recycling challenges and reward them when they have done a good job. Label your bins so they know what can go in which one and talk about the benefits of recycling, so they know they have to continue as they grow older.

These tips are easy to do but can still create a great impact and reduce the levels of waste in your home. All it takes is a bit of creativity, time and effort. To find out more about how we can help you with your disposal needs, please contact us on 0800 083 7807 or visit our website for further information.

The Skip vs The Tip

AdobeStock_103434726- TipWhen you have a large amount of waste to get rid of that will not fit in your regular bins, you tend to have two main options available for you. Either go to the tip or hire a skip. Here we discuss the benefits of both, and which one is the better and most efficient and effective option.

Location
A lot of people have a waste management centre or tip that is within driving distance of their home, but the distance can vary dramatically. When considering going to the tip, calculate how many trips you think it will take you to remove all of your rubbish, calculate the time it will take for you to drive there, empty your rubbish into the relevant sections of the tip, and then drive back to potentially repeat the process several times over. In addition to this, depending on when you go, there could be dozens of people with the same idea as you as you never know how busy the tip will be. During busy periods, it can be extremely stressful and time consuming to go to the tip.


The great thing about skip hire is that you know the location of the skip will be as near to your house as possible. If you have room, it can be on your land or on your drive which is fantastic. Even if you must have the skip on the road, you know that it will be closer to you than the tip is. This is extremely convenient, especially if you have a few last-minute bits of rubbish that you have forgotten about as it means you don’t have to do another trip to the tip. Once you hire a skip, you know that the skip is only for your use, so you have don’t have to worry about the potential crowds and queues.

Cost
Because you do not have to pay for the tip, it can seem like the obvious choice to go for. However, taking into account the several trips you may have to do, you need to calculate how much fuel you will use in the process as it can add up quickly, especially if your car is full of heavy rubbish. You must think about cost not just in monetary terms but also how much time it will cost you to go to and from the tip. If you need multiple trips this could take you a whole day or even an entire weekend. The time saved will be significant if you chose a skip instead.

Amount of waste
Your decision will be made for you automatically if you have too much rubbish to fit in the car – in that scenario a skip may be your only option. Having a skip means to can get rid of it all in one go and even if you could fit it in your car, it will save you having to make several trips. On the other hand, if you only have a small amount of rubbish, there may not be any point in hiring a skip at all. Measure the quantity of rubbish you are expecting to have and see if there is a skip size that will suit your needs. There is no point hiring a massive skip if you do not have a lot of rubbish, however there are many sizes available. You will also be surprised how much rubbish you have. You may think you will not have a lot, but once you start on a project, the rubbish adds up quickly so a skip may be the choice for you.

Type of waste
A deciding factor is also the type of waste you are wanting to get rid of. If the rubbish smells or is dirty, it will not be a good idea to have it in your car as it could cause permanent damage. Although there are some items that are not suitable for skips, the majority of rubbish can be placed in skips and the great thing is you do not have to separate your waste as this will be done for you once the skip has been collected.

Flexible
A major concern for people when hiring a skip is where to store it. However, this shouldn’t put you off hiring a skip. Even if you do not have space on your private property or to stay on the street overnight, then we offer a same day skip hire service / wait and load service which allows you to get rid of your rubbish quickly within 30 minutes and then the skip will immediately be taken away. By choosing a skip you can be more flexible as you are not dependent on the opening and closing times of the tip, avoiding peak traffic hours or the need to queue when you get there.

Although tips are great places to get rid of your rubbish, a skip may be the best option for you as it provides you with flexibility, they come in a range of sizes and is for your use only which can save you time, money in the long run and energy.

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

LSPS guide to using a skip for house clearances

Whether you are moving to a new house, renovating a property or just want a big spring clean and a fresh start, using a skip can be really useful. In this guide we will try and answer all the questions you might have.

Do I need a skip license?
If you are placing the skip on your private property, then you will not require a skip permit. However, if you are intending to keep the skip on a public road, you will have to have a license to do this. LSPS will take the hassle out of this and we will handle all of the paperwork for you, so you don’t have to. Usually local councils take about 3 days to issue a license so please take these timings into consideration.

What are the benefits of using a skip hire for house clearances?
  • There are so many reasons why hiring a skip might be the best solution for you:You can choose the size you need. Whether it is for a small or large clear out, you are in control of what size skip you need. There are five different skip hire options that we offer, so we can be flexible around your needs
  • Convenience- having a skip delivered to your door can be extremely convenient and a precious time saver. It means you can get rid of your rubbish in one go and will save you time and money on travelling to and from the tip. If you only need a skip for a short while, we also offer a wait and load service which means you have a short window of time to get rid of your rubbish and we will immediately take the skip away for you, meaning you don’t have the skip outside your house overnight.
  • Environmentally friendly - we will ensure that the rubbish in the skip will be recycled where possible.
Which size skip is best for me?
This question completely depends on the individual circumstances. The ideal skip for you will depend on the amount of rubbish you need to get rid of. It is usually a case of the bigger the house, the bigger the skip needed. Refer to our skip size guide here which provides a visual representation of how much you can fit in each skip size. Just remember before choosing that it’s not always best to go for a smaller size if you think there is a chance you may fill it completely. You will be surprised once you start clearing stuff out how much more rubbish you have then you initially suspected. If you get a skip that is too small, you risk overfilling, and this could mean your skip cannot be taken away due to safety reasons. Alternatively, don’t go for too large a size as you need to consider how much space it will take up.

What can you put in the skip?
The list is almost endless of things you can put in the skip. It is more important to know what you can NOT place in the skip. Forbidden items include:

Liquids, oil, paint, asbestos, batteries, fridges, freezers, medical waste, AC units, hazardous and toxic materials, tyres and gas bottles.

Where do I put the skip?
Ideally you would have space on your private land or driveway to store the skip. This is convenient for you in many ways as it stops you needing a skip license, it is close to your house, and you can keep it there until you need to get rid of it. If this is not an option for you then you can usually have it on the road outside your house (as long as they are no restrictions). The only difference with this is that you will have to try and get a place as close to your home as possible and you will have to receive a skip license beforehand, so please bear this in mind when you are considering timings.

If you need any more advice about your house clearance and your skip requirements, then please speak to LSPS today. Contact us on 0800 083 7807. We are open Monday- Friday 07.30 and 16.30 and Saturdays from 7.30 until midday.

Why is plastic so harmful?

We know it has been in the news a lot recently about the damage plastics are doing to the Earth and how it is almost becoming a plastic planet. Plastic has become a huge part of our day to day lives and we may not even be fully aware of how much we use plastics and waste a lot of it. Here we discuss the reasons why plastics are so bad for our environment and what steps we can take on an individual level to try and help.

Reason 1: They take a LONG time to decompose
This is one of the main reasons why plastics are so damaging to our environment. Plastic products vary in how long they take to decompose and the length of time in a lot of cases is shocking. Here are a few examples of typical household items and how long they take to completely biodegrade:
  • Toilet Roll - A month
  • Cardboard - 2 months
  • Plastic Bag - 10-20 years
  • Styrofoam cup - Approximately 50 years
  • Aluminium can - 200 years
  • Plastic Bottle - 450 years
  • A nappy - 450 years
  • Plastic Straws - Up to 200 years
  • Plastic Cutlery – 100-1000 years
  • Some plastics - Never
Because plastic is extremely strong it is a desirable product but it is also one that’s difficult to destroy. Because they take so long to decompose, people have tried to suggest alternatives such as burning the plastic, however doing this would produce a lot of harmful pollutants which will have an even worse effect on the environment.

Reason 2: They are cheap
As consumers, we are very strongly driven by price, so when we see something that is both practical and cheap, we are tempted to buy it. A lot of plastic items however are very cheap to buy and cheap for the manufacturers to produce. Changing packaging to something that is fully biodegradable can be a lot more expensive, which is why some manufacturers are put off.

Reason 3: They are not made sustainably
Plastic is manufactured by using coal and crude oil which are both unsustainable sources. We have a limited supply of these materials which is another reason why we shouldn’t be using them all up by making plastics.

Reason 4: They are only being used once
Single use plastics are a main area of concern as the amount of waste they produce is off the scale. People are using the plastics sometimes for a day, hours, if not minutes before they are getting thrown away.

Reason 5: They kill animals
It is horrific to see the impact plastics can have on animals. There is loads of plastic waste entering our oceans each day which is severely affecting marine wildlife like turtles, seals and whales. Some animals are being caught up in the plastics, whereas others are eating the plastic and choking. It is affecting all types of wildlife as well. Even smaller organisms such as plankton are being affected as they are consuming microplastics which are barely visible. 

Reason 6: Humans are eating plastic
Without us even realising, there is a good chance we are consuming traces of plastic fibres and microplastics. In fact, one study suggests that humans can actually be eating the equivalent amount of plastic as a credit card each week! This is a scary thought to consider, however people are unsure of all the details yet.

What can we do?
Although a lot of damage has been caused, we can still carry out some changes to our daily lives to try and reduce the amount of plastic that we use:
  • ALWAYS re use your plastic bags if you go shopping rather than buying new ones
  • Use paper straws instead of plastic ones
  • Be conscious of the products you buy and what packaging they are in. Try and choose items that are packaged in a biodegradable alternative whenever possible
  • Use reusable coffee cups and water bottles instead of buying disposable
  • Try and get involved in beach clean-ups or other events specifically set up to help clean up the plastics
  • Use correct waste disposal. Separate your waste as efficiently as possible to increase the amount of stuff that will get recycled.
To find out more about how 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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