News in brief (16/07/21)

With news on: Veolia cleans up after Euro 2020 final; ministers ‘failing to get to grips with waste crisis’; Stoke-based clinical waste plant secures permit; and, Paper Round to begin collections with electric vehicles.

A Veolia refuse collector in Brent poses outside Wembley stadium (picture: Veolia)

Veolia cleans up after Euro 2020 final

Waste management company Veolia carried out large-scale clean-up operations in the London boroughs of Westminster and Brent during and after the final of Euro 2020 on 11 July.

Veolia carries out collections on behalf of both Westminster city council and Brent council.

A Veolia refuse collector in Brent poses outside Wembley stadium (picture: Veolia)

In Westminster, 215 operatives and 20 vehicles spent 19 hours clearing 20 tonnes of waste from the Leicester Square and Soho areas.

In Brent, 16 operatives and five vehicles collected nine tonnes of waste in the area around Wembley Stadium during the course of 19 and a half hours.

Pascal Hauret, managing director of municipal for Veolia UK, said: “A massive thank you to the Veolia teams in Westminster and Brent, who continue to amaze us with their unwavering hard work and team efforts, no matter the situation.

“We have been working flat out throughout Euro 2020 to show London’s best face to visiting fans and it gives us great pride that we played our vital role in this, by keeping the streets clean and safe for all.”

Ministers ‘failing to get to grips with waste crisis’

Environmental campaign group Friends of the Earth has slammed ministers for “failing to get to grips with the waste crisis”.

Statistics on waste and recycling for 2019 were published by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs yesterday (15 July).

Figures published by Defra show the UK’s overall household recycling rate had increased to 46.2% in 2019 (picture: Shutterstock)

They showed the UK’s overall household recycling rate had increased by 1.2% to 46.2% (see story).

Friends of the Earth plastic campaigner Camilla Zerr suggested the statistics were no cause for celebration. She said: “Despite modest improvements, less than half of our domestic waste is recycled, with the rest either burned or buried. Meanwhile the enormous waste mountain continues to grow.

“Plastic packaging remains a big problem. Provisional 2020 figures show an extra 220,000 tonnes was generated compared to 2017, casting more doubt on the government’s ability to fulfil its ambition for all plastic packaging to be recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025.

“There has to be an urgent shift in emphasis towards reducing the amount of waste produced in the first place, with far more reuse, refill and repair, along with legally binding targets for reducing unnecessary plastic. This is what the public supports, and what the government has to deliver.”

Stoke-based clinical waste plant secures permit

Waste to fuel specialist Andusia announced on 14 July that the Stoke-based clinical waste treatment plant for which it is the sole supplier had secured a permit.

Owned by Clinitek (Stoke) LLP, the facility will be operated and maintained under a five-year contract by Stoke Operations Limited.

An artist’s impression of the clinical waste plant, which will be based in Stoke. Stoke Operations says it expects the facility to be operational by August 2021 (picture: Stoke Operations)

Energy from waste (EfW) plant developer Waste Energy Power Partners (WEPP) is constructing the facility. The plant received a permit following a consultation held in May.

In a statement, Andusia said: “As we look towards entering the commissioning stages following construction and final works being completed in the coming months, Andusia are looking forward to welcoming guests to the site very shortly and even more excited to be operational in Q3 2021.”

Andusia will supply up to 16,000 tonnes per annum of hazardous and clinical waste, comprising sharps, pharmaceuticals, bagged yellow, orange and ‘tiger stripe’ waste, for high temperature treatment under a “long-term” contract.

Paper Round to begin collections with electric vehicles

Commercial recycling company Paper Round has announced it is to begin “London’s first” fully electric heavy vehicle commercial recycling and waste collections.

The company has taken delivery of its first electric 26 tonne RCV and 7.5 tonne box trucks at its Purfleet depot. The trucks will begin service later this month, the company says.

Paper Round’s 26 tonne electric RCV, which began life as a diesel truck before being retrofitted

Bill Swan, Paper Round’s managing director, said: “These additions to our fleet will form an essential part of our ongoing commitment to reducing our carbon footprint.

“They will also be contributing to London’s journey to net zero by 2050 and to lowering other forms of air pollution such as nitrogen oxides.

“We’ve been running electric light vans and company cars for three years and we are excited to officially launch London’s first heavy electric trucks.”

The 20t RCV started life as one of the company’s diesel vehicles, which has been retrofitted to be fully electric. The 7.5t box truck has a range of up to 130km on full charge and the RCV up to 200km.

The two vehicles will together save around 70 tonnes of CO2 per year, the company says.

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