News in brief (29/06/2022)

With news on: Poots officially opens Carrickfergus HWRC; carbon recycling project awarded £50,000; Sutton doubles annual car visits to HWRC; and, man fined after link to fly-tipped waste.

Poots officially opens Carrickfergus HWRC

Northern Ireland’s Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has invested £1 million in a household waste and recycling centre (HWRC) in Carrickfergus.

The money was awarded to Mid and East Antrim borough council to build the new Sullatober HWRC.

(l-r): Mayor of Mid and East Antrim borough council, Alderman Noel Williams, with Minister Poots

Speaking at its official opening this week, Northern Ireland’s environment minister Edwin Poots said: “This £1 million investment is part of our Household Waste Recycling Collaborative Change Programme and brings the total invested so far to almost £5 million.

“This investment alone will mean over 1,000 tonnes of waste will be diverted from landfill each year.

“The money also helps improve how waste is separated and the quality of materials collected to support local processors and our circular economy.”

The most recent Northern Irish household waste recycling statistics, published on 28 April for the period from 1 October to 31 December last year, revealed that the recycling figure for the last 12 months is 50.2%, the minister added.

According to DAERA, the redeveloped Sullatober HWRC has doubled in size following the investment and serves 40,000 residents. It is said to be the ninth council household recycling project funded by DAERA.

Carbon recycling project awarded £50,000

Carbon dioxide and water could be recycled into renewable future fuels under a new system being developed by engineering experts at Northumbria University.

The project is funded by Northern Accelerator, a partnership between all five of the North East’s universities that supports the creation of innovative businesses based on research by regional academics.

(l-r) PhD student Rana Faisal Shahzad and Dr Rasul discussing a carbon recycling project with Dan Ferguson of Suez

Northumbria University said that the £50,000 award will help its existing collaboration with waste management company Suez in North Tyneside.

It added that, led by Dr Shahid Rasul, a senior lecturer in the university’s department of mechanical and construction engineering, the team has “successfully” used an “inexpensive” copper-based catalyst to convert CO2 into both gas and liquid fuels.

Dr Rasul explained: “Production of on-site and on-demand renewable fuels from recycling CO2 and water will be a significant development for the process industries and gas distributors.

“If we produce on-site and on-demand carbon monoxide from recycling CO2, it could support industrial partners, such as Suez, in delivering an affordable supply of CO from their waste flue gases.”

The project is to last 12 months.

Sutton doubles annual car visits to HWRC

Sutton council’s environment and sustainable transport committee agreed last week (23 June) to double the number of visits a household can make by car to a household waste and recycling centre (HWRC) each year.

The council said that the ‘fair usage policy’ was first introduced to the Kimpton Park Way site in July 2021 in response to concerns that some users were taking advantage of the unlimited usage to dispose of commercial waste.

The fair usage policy has been in operation since then, allowing households to access the site up to 12 times a year. Following feedback from residents, the limit has been doubled to 24, ensuring that all residents get “the access they need”, the local authority added.

For car, van and large vehicle users, visits are by appointment only and must be booked in advance.

According to Cllr Barry Lewis, chair of Sutton’s environment and sustainable transport committee, “the limit will stop commercial traders taking advantage of the public service and will protect the value of residents’ council tax.”

The usage policy came into effect on 27 June.

Man fined after link to fly-tipped waste

A man from Haddenham has been fined after waste from his household was found fly-tipped in Willingham, South Cambridge district council reported.

The fly-tip was reported to the council by a passer-by in March. The “dumped” household waste and construction materials were discovered on Meadow Road in the village, the council continued.

The waste was fly-tipped in Willingham

It added that a council enforcement officer discovered that, amongst the waste, there was a printed address that linked the rubbish to the property in Haddenham.

According to the local authority, it turned out that the household had paid someone cash to remove the waste without checking whether they were a registered waste carrier. The person then dumped it in Willingham.

A fixed penalty notice of £300 was issued to the resident for not ensuring the necessary checks.

South Cambridgeshire district council’s lead cabinet member for environment, Cllr Brian Milnes, said: “It is imperative that anyone who is hired to remove waste is a registered waste carrier.

“This case highlights that it is very much the responsibility of the household who has waste to get rid of to ensure that they know where it is going to end up.”

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