Recycling the non-recyclable

SUEZ recycling and recovery UK partnered with a well-established professional services firm in 2004, providing waste management services for their large office in central London. This partnership was founded upon, and is strengthened by, the aligned vision to see waste as a resource and to always strive to put it to good use.
The mission

To find new solutions to recycle more

With 5,000 employees based in the London head office, producing a wide-range of different waste materials, the company was seeking new solutions to increase recycling rates. In their joint mission with SUEZ, the goal was set to reduce the volume of recyclable materials that were disposed of in the general waste bin.
Our solution

Zero waste boxes turn non-recycled waste into new products

SUEZ is a partner of TerraCycle, an innovative recycling company whose mission is to eliminate the idea of waste by recycling the non-recyclable.

 

An audit of the waste produced at the London office in 2017 highlighted that a vast proportion ending up in the general waste bin could actually be recycled if segregated, collected, and sorted using zero waste boxes.

Crisp and snack packaging

Items such as crisp packets, sweet and biscuit wrappers can be separately disposed of in a zero waste box, where the material is then separated into fibres and plastics. The fibres (such as paper or wood-based products) are recycled or composted, while the plastics undergo extrusion and pelletisation to be moulded into new recycled plastic products, such as waste containers and park benches.

Office waste

A high proportion of waste produced in the office building was identified to be plastic or metal office supplies which were suitable for recycling with a zero waste box. The box is designed to collect various items of office stationery such as pencil sharpeners, staplers, hole punchers, disposable and reusable tape dispensers, plastic file dividers, folders and binders and much more.

 

These items, once segregated and collected in the zero waste box avoiding all contamination, can also be sorted and separated into material types before being responsibly recycled into new products.

The results

Employees have been using the boxes since January 2018 and, to date, it has been recorded that 767kg of crisp packets and 377kg of office supplies have been diverted away from the general waste bin. This positively increases the quantity of waste materials being recycled.

 

This early adoption of new recycling solutions is very impressive and is a testament to positive behaviour change of the company’s employees, who are proactively considering the disposal route of their waste.

 

The quantities being segregated and collected are expected to triple during 2019 with roll-out of the solution in 22 other offices around the UK and around 22,000 staff. Furthermore, the professional services firm purchased TerraCycle recycled products for their recent sustainability events.

We never stop challenging ourselves and our suppliers to keep on increasing recycling rates and prevent valuable materials from being destroyed.
When SUEZ presented us the TerraCycle solution, it appeared to be a great opportunity to divert recyclable materials from general waste. We are happy that SUEZ could support us in the national roll-out of the service. We worked together to make sure that every office was up to speed with the function of the zero waste boxes.

Professional services firm-Manager

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