Recycling Lives notes 91% landfill diversion rate

Metals recycling and environmental business Recycling Lives has published its first environmental social governance (ESG) report for the 2021/22 financial year, noting a 91% landfill diversion rate.

The report touched on social value delivered through the company's rehabilitation programmes

The company said that the report, which covers the period from 1 March 2021 to 28 February 2022, “demonstrates its response to climate change and its progress in environmental innovation and social impact”. This is measured against previous financial year’s baseline as well as against the company’s sustainability goals for 2025, the document outlined.

Waste management

The report noted that the company has achieved a 91% landfill diversion rate in 2021/22, while its 2025 target sits at 98%. It said that the firm received 657,023 tonnes of waste in total in 2021/22, out of which 595,302 tonnes were diverted from landfill.

Recycling Lives explained that the remainder which did end up in landfill was proportionally up on the previous year “due to a more challenging mix of materials and an increase in the volume of recyclable materials received”. On the recycling of materials, the company said that it “responsibly recycled over 150,000 cars”, generating “more than half a million tonnes of high-quality shredded steel”.

Social value

The document also touched on social value, explaining that this is “determined by auditing financial savings created for society and the taxpayer from its activities, which have benefitted local community groups, individuals and both local and national government”. The social value in 2021/22 was calculated at £28.9 million and delivered “through the work the company does and by working with its sister organisation Recycling Lives Charity.

The company said that it runs a rehabilitation programme with people who have been in the justice system and ex-offenders, which the report described as “instrumental” in reducing re-offending rates and supporting people for a self-sufficient path forward.

The report continued that in 2021/22, it helped 75 ex-offenders secure jobs. It also outlined that while the average reoffending rate in the UK is approximately 60%, among those employed by Recycling Lives who have been in custody, this is less than 5%.

Recycling Lives explained that ‘advanced thermal decomposition’ is one of its key techniques to prevent automotive shredder residue (ASR) from ending up in landfill, adding that the by-product of the process can be used to create green hydrogen amongst other things.


Commenting on the report, Gerry Marshall, CEO of Recycling Lives, said: “This first ESG Report aims to communicate in full transparency our sustainability progress to date, our social value achievements and importantly, our ambitions of where we want to be in the future.”

He continued that he is “incredibly proud” of the progress the company’s made. According to Mr Marshall, this spans from “driving innovation across our industry, achieving B Corp certification to delivering significant social value in communities the length and breadth of the country – all whilst making continuous and iterative improvements to our business model and operations”.

He concluded: “This report highlights the strong foundation for the company’s continued evolution and provides a platform to build from year on year to keep improving.”

The report comes following the firm’s brand refresh and B Corp certification achieved in December last year. The document in full can be accessed here.

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