In an attempt to reduce the levels of waste being disposed of in landfill sites, London has joined the C40 group. C40 consists of major cities from around the world including Paris, Milan, New York and San Francisco.
London has responded to the challenge by instigating ‘The London Environment Strategy’ for rubbish removal in the city. The aim is for the local authorities to assist householders and businesses to reduce their volumes of rubbish by implementing ‘Reduction and Recycling plans’ by 2020.
Something had to be done as household and business waste provides one of the planets largest pollutants.
West London Waste Authority
A specific example of what is being undertaken in regard to rubbish removal in London can be seen in the operation of WLWA or the West London Waste Authority. WLWA is responsible for the waste disposal of six London Boroughs:
- London Borough of Brent
- London Borough of Ealing
- London Borough of Harrow
- London Borough of Hillingdon
- London Borough of Hounslow
- London Borough of Richmond upon Thames
Reducing landfill relies on households and businesses playing their part in the process. If a family can reduce the amounts of plastic waste, such as water and soft-drink bottles and recycle as much as possible, then landfill requirements will be greatly improved. Businesses and manufacturers need to eliminate the use of non-biodegradable packaging to reduce waste.
When the WLWA bin men are undertaking rubbish removal in London they are only allowed to take away rubbish that is placed in a prescribed wheely-bin or rubbish sack.
In the case of builders waste, a skip can be hired from a company such as Clearabee, a nationwide company with the experience and capacity to deal with many types of waste. Clearabee provide rubbish clearance services to businesses and the public, including “a man and a van” to remove rubbish not suitable for the local authority service.
In the case of West London, 96 percent of waste is sent to an ERC or Energy Recovery Facility. The facility is run by a partner company, Suez UK Ltd.
The residue from this energy creation process is an ash that can be used in construction materials.
Landfill is only considered when disposing of hazardous substances, such as asbestos, which cannot be recycled or used in energy creation.
To assist the local residents, there are seven Household Re-use and recycling Centers or HRRC which are located in:
- Ealing – Greenford and Acton
- Hillingdon – Harefield
Composting As A Solution
Food and garden waste which would normally be destined for rubbish removal in London can be used to make compost which will eventually be used to provide improved soil quality while reducing the demand for landfill. This composting process could take place at individual homes or on a much larger, commercial scale.
A further innovation, supported by London’s Mayor involves recycling used cooking oil to become Bio Diesel to be used in London’s vehicles.
A Very Good Cause
Reducing landfill requirements is not just about lowering the level of rubbish removal in London. City Harvest in London has found a way to make use of the huge amounts of food that are left over in restaurants,supermarkets, hotels, etc. that would normally be thrown out into the waste bin.
By providing meals for charities in London, City Harvest have rescued over 2,500 Tonnes of food that, in the past, may have been heading to landfill. That equates to 6 million meals being supplied to hungry and needy people.