Bins Я Us: Wheelie Bin Store launches to boost business recycling
Drop-in shop could offer advice and raise public awareness
Town centre stores promoting recycling and selling waste management services could be the answer to Britain’s stalled efforts to hit national recycling targets, while saving companies big money into the bargain.
According to a nationwide, environmentally-conscious waste management company, redundant retail units could be let cheaply to get the message across to local businesses – as well as passing members of the public – that recycling saves money.
The Big Green company says the UK looks like it will fall short of national and European targets for recycling, and reluctant or unwitting business owners are one of the major reasons that our recycling levels are low compared to more enlightened European nations.
“The big problem is that many businesses just don’t know how to recycle,” says Big Green spokesperson Mark Hall, “And it’s costing them hundreds and thousands in extra waste management charges, and costing the British economy in terms of raw materials.
“We need to literally sell recycling to companies. From a shop.”
Latest government statistics for both domestic and business waste show Britain bumping along, recycling around 45% of its waste for the third year in a row. With some of our European partners coming close to a 100% recycled economy, it simply isn’t good enough says Big Green.
These statistics are borne out by Big Green’s own experience of waste management for businesses right across the UK. According to Big Green:
• More than 50% of companies do not have appropriate recycling facilities for the waste they produce
• Some 20% of companies only have a single general waste bin, and do not recycle at all
• This figure comes down to less than 10% in Scotland where companies are required by law to recycle waste, and there’s been a huge awareness programme
“The worst part is that some bosses don’t realise that they are paying extra through not recycling effectively,” says Big Green’s Mark Hall. “And there is a small hard core of companies who hang the expense, and refuse to recycle as they think it too much effort.”
The answer, says Mark Hall, is to put sound waste management and recycling right in the face of local businesses.
“That’s why we’re suggesting a shop or showroom premises that is simply full of bins,” says Hall. “Business owners can come in, take a look at what’s available, listen to impartial advice, and then make decisions based on their company needs.”
Big Green says that the showrooms could be run by councils, or a partnership of local waste management companies. Not only would companies be able to see for themselves the kinds of bins and receptacles they could and should be using for their organisations, they could also get clear advice on what works best for them.
“And – of course – there’s the all-important bottom line,” says Hall, “Clear, jargon-free advice on how recycling saves them cold, hard cash through not paying the landfill tax.”
Big Green says the idea would inevitably attract public attention, and there’s no stopping the scheme being extended to help members of the public recycle their domestic waste better.
“The simple fact is that the more we recycle as a nation, the less money our businesses have to pay on importing and processing raw materials,” says Hall.
“If 100% of our glass was recycled instead of less than half, there’d be a genuine reduction in the sale price of goods in jars and bottles. By throwing things into landfill, we’re literally throwing away cash as well.”
Big Green says that the bin store idea would be cost effective from the start, with organisations saving themselves money within days.
“We’re falling behind and wasting money by not recycling properly,” says Mark Hall. “A bin shop would be a ‘wheelie’ good idea.”