With news on: Vehicles checked in Environment Agency operation; New WEEE recycling banks for Derbyshire Dales; South Gloucestershire warns over securing waste in vehicles; South Cambridgeshire tackles throwaway culture, and; Viridor donates in celebration of safe working milestone
Viridor donation marks safe-working milestone
Viridor has donated £1,000 to charity to mark a health and safety milestone in the construction of its Energy Recover Facility, which is currently being built at Dunbar.
Viridor and its construction partners achieved 250,000 safe working hours on the construction of the £177m Scottish ERF site without a reportable incident over the summer.
To mark this safe working milestone, Viridor donated £1,000 to the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) to support the charity’s Dunbar station.
Construction workers were given the opportunity to choose a local charity to receive the donation, and decided the money should go to the town’s lifeboat station.
Commenting on the donation, Gary Fairbairn, Coxswain at Dunbar RNLI, said: “It’s great to see companies like Viridor take workplace safety so seriously and we are thrilled they have chosen to recognise this by rewarding our charity.
“The support we receive from Viridor throughout the year is fantastic and this is an extra boost for us. The money will go towards keeping residents and visitors to Dunbar safe when they are at sea.”
South Gloucestershire warns over securing waste in vehicles
South Gloucestershire council has warned waste carriers to secure their loads more securely during a stop-and-check operation targeting two major roads.
Working alongside Avon and Somerset police, the council carried out stop-checks on the A4174 ring road and the A38 near Thornbury last week (10 October).
In total the council stopped 65 vehicles for potential offences during the course of the operation. The majority of drivers were given verbal advice on securing waste, but six operators will receive more formal written advice. One vehicle was seized by police officers due to its dangerous condition.
Robert Walsh, head of safe strong communities, said: “There was a clear improvement in the way waste is being carried on our roads since the last time we carried out an operation similar to this one.
“Publicity of previous operations and the hefty fines imposed as a result of our successful prosecutions appears to have had a positive effect.”
Cllr Heather Goddard, chair of Environment and Community Services Committee, said: “We spend tens of thousands of pounds each year cleaning up litter from roadside verges, which is a burden to our council tax payers as they bear the brunt of these costs.”
South Cambridgeshire tackles ‘throwaway culture’
An initiative launched in South Cambridgeshire is aiming to divert broken objects from landfill whilst boosting volunteers’ repair skills.
The South Cambridgeshire roving repair café network, supported by South Cambridgeshire district council, was launched this summer to bring together local volunteer repairers to share their experience with people who need items fixed.
The next repair café will take place during International Repair Café Week (17-23 October) on Saturday 22 October at the Salvation Army Hall on Station Road in Waterbeach.
Any tired or broken items needing a new lease of life can be brought along to the team of volunteer repairers on the day.
Cllr Mark Howell, South Cambridgeshire district council’s cabinet member, said: “We throw away piles of stuff each day, including items that could be given a new lease of life with a simple fix. Repair cafés aim to change all that, diverting more items from landfill and changing people’s mind set from throwing things to fixing things.”
Vehicles checked in Environment Agency waste operation
The Environment Agency stopped and checked 60 vehicles carrying waste in an operation in the North East last this month (5 October) as part of the Right waste, Right place campaign.
The Agency checked whether vehicles had a valid licence to carry waste, that they were properly maintained, that waste was secured to prevent escape and that it was transferred with the correct paperwork.
The operation focused on waste sites in Washington, Tyne and Wear. Officers gathered information on waste vehicle movements, waste carriers, and measures to prevent litter escape. The DVLA also did vehicle checks and looked at site transport procedures, serving one prohibition notice.
Dave O’Toole, waste team leader in the North East, said: “There’s a legal obligation on those who produce and manage waste to make sure it is handled responsibly and legally – this is called their ‘Duty of Care’.
“The deliberate mis-description of waste defrauds public funds, causes damage to the environment and impacts on legitimate businesses.
“We’re working hard to raise awareness and ensure waste carriers and the permitted sites which accept waste are following their duty of care responsibilities. This helps minimise the impact on communities and the environment that we all enjoy.”
While no vehicles were identified as breaching their duty of care during the operation, the Agency will carry out follow up work with regards to vehicle maintenance, improvements to current waste security measures and duty of care paperwork.
New WEEE recycling banks for Derbyshire Dales
Derbyshire Dales district council has announced that residents can now recycle small Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) at three electricals recycling banks.
The new banks can be found at three district council car parks in the area.
Items accepted at the banks include small electrical appliances such as irons, and kettles, small electrical devices such as mobile phones and smoke alarms and small DIY and garden electricals such as drills.
A district council spokesperson said: “If you see a crossed out wheelie bin sign on any electrical product it means it is classed as ‘WEEE’ and can’t be recycled with household waste.
“However, recycling electrical items can have a huge impact because precious metals recycled from old electricals are used to make new components for technological equipment.
“Thanks to our household recycling collections Dales residents already recycle 55% of all waste, which is the highest rate in the whole of Derbyshire. We hope the new WEEE banks will encourage more people to recycle electrical items too.”