News in brief (12/08/2022)

With news on: McCarthy Marland in ‘multi-million-pound’ acquisition; Co-op expands tech recirculation trials; Veolia unveils ‘UK first’ heat network pipe lining; and, 26% of consumers have ‘no idea’ what a DRS is.

McCarthy Marland in ‘multi-million-pound’ acquisition

Bristol-based waste management company McCarthy Marland has announced it has acquired the owner of Aasvogel Skip Hire Ltd and Valley Trading Ltd in a “multi-million-pound deal”.

The company says the acquisition of Hughes and Salvidge Holdings Ltd forms part of its expansion plans for “the South West and beyond”.

(l-r) Kevin McCarthy, founder and director of McCarthy Marland, and Alex Marland, director of McCarthy Marland

Oxfordshire-based Aasvogel Skip Hire and Gloucestershire-based Valley Trading will expand McCarthy Marland’s reach across the M4 and M5 corridors.

Alex Marland, McCarthy Marland’s director, said: “The acquisition of both Aasvogel Skip Hire Ltd and Valley Trading Ltd represents a significant step forward in McCarthy Marland’s journey.

“These are exciting times as we enhance and expand our offering across the region, strengthen our position within the waste management sector and accelerate our overall growth.”

Acquiring Hughes and Salvidge Holdings will see McCarthy Marland more than double its turnover to more than £18 million, the company says, and enable it to increase the amount of waste it handles.

The number of staff employed by McCarthy Marland workforce will rise by more than 60% to 130, while the existing leadership teams of both Aasvogel Skip Hire and Valley Trading will remain in place.

The combined group will now handle around 145,000 tonnes of waste each year, 75% of which is recycled or recovered via energy from waste.

Co-op expands tech recirculation trials

The Co-op supermarket has expanded its trial with tech recirculation start-up Spring as it looks to help consumers “cut e-waste and unlock the value in their old and unwanted phones and electronic devices.”

The trial will now see Spring’s self-service ‘pods’ rolled out to Co-op branches in Birmingham, Brighton, Leeds and Manchester.

An example of the Spring self-service pods used by the Co-op

Shoppers enter details of their device on a touchscreen and place it in the pod via a letterbox. Once Spring receives the device, the company checks it, sends a quote, and pays the shopper within two to five days.

The service sees customers paid for depositing waste electrical and electronic equipment in the pods, which goes on to be repaired, refurbished, reused or recycled. Spring’s pods accept almost 14,000 different devices.

Mark Matthews, the Co-op’s director of innovation and format, said: “Co-op’s partnership with Spring will enable more communities to recycle or reuse their electronic devices locally, unlocking the value in forgotten phones and other unwanted tech and, importantly, preventing unnecessary and avoidable e-waste.”

Veolia unveils ‘UK first’ heat network pipe lining

Waste management company Veolia says it is using carbon lining pipe technology to maintain the integrity of a heat distribution system in Sheffield “in a first for the UK”.

Relining the pipes of the 44km long Sheffield District Energy Network with a carbon fibre and epoxy resin sleeve removes the need to excavate large areas and cuts the CO2 emissions of maintenance operations by up to 80%, Veolia says.

Veolia is relining the pipes with a carbon fibre and epoxy resin sleeve

The pipes, which distribute pressurised hot water at 110°C, supply more than 125 commercial and public sector buildings with heat.

Donald Macphail, Veolia’s chief operating officer for treatment, said: “As energy managers we know that the efficiency of buildings and decarbonising them is now key to establishing the sustainable cities of the future.

“District heating schemes will have a growing role to play as we move to net zero and this latest innovation will ensure we can continue to deliver the guaranteed, cost-effective energy to the communities and businesses they serve.”

Veolia supplies the network with heat from its Energy Recovery Facility in Sheffield.

The company says it commenced the “initial works” of lining the pipes, which “has a minimal impact on system operation”, in early August.

26% of consumers have ‘no idea’ what a DRS is

More than a quarter (26%) of consumers have “no idea” what a deposit return scheme (DRS) is or how one works, according to research commissioned by data standards organisation GS1 UK.

All four UK nations have announced that they will introduce a DRS by 2025, with the Scottish scheme set to launch next year.

GS1 UK surveyed 2,000 adults on the DRS

GS1 UK’s poll of 2,000 adults found that 60% of consumers surveyed said being able to reclaim a deposit would make them more likely to buy the products included in the schemes.

While 69% of firms believe the introduction of the DRS will be “positive” for their industry, GS1 UK says, 40% think it will have a negative impact on their own business.

A third of the businesses surveyed said they would raise the RRP of products to account for added operational costs and complexities.

Meanwhile, 34% of those who responded to the survey believe recycling is “unnecessarily complicated”, while 45% think simplicity should be the focus when reforming the recycling system.

Anne Godfrey, GS1 UK’s CEO, said: “A successful deposit return scheme relies on consumer participation. Our data demonstrates that simplicity is key and therefore needs to be at the heart of any successful scheme.”

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