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Paper is Key

11 July 2018 / by Jonathan Richardson (author) / Sheffield
 (photo:  CC BY 2.0.)
/ (photo: CC BY 2.0.)

Jonathan Richardson says recent calls for households to reduce their use of plastics must not foreshadow the crucial role of businesses in recycling waste in the UK.


Businesses generate approximately a quarter of all the waste in England, which has prompted the government to raise its landfill tax to £88.95 per tonne in a bid to stimulate recycling.


Following a research finding that up to  80 per cent of commercial enterprises in the UK do not recycle or even have a "green" policy, stipulations that business owners should reasonably endeavour to 'prevent, reuse, recycle or recover waste (in that order)', can certainly be described as idealistic.


There are relatively painless measures that can be implemented by most companies to save thousands of pounds a year in landfill tax, whilst crucially lessening their environmental footprint.


The Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) estimates that paper accounts for between 60 and 80 per cent of all office waste, which, in turn, suggests s will provide an "easy win" for office-based businesses to make a very real difference to the environment.


WRAP even provides guidance on recycling which will help commercial organisations to set up a recycling scheme and finding the right waste contractor.


Additionally, it is worth noting that paper recycling requires only a third of the energy used to create new paper from pulp, which makes it one of the least energy-intensive materials to recycle.


The success of any recycling scheme will ultimately depend on the degree of staff "buy-in", and it is therefore essential to ensure everyone in a business is involved in recycling measures.  Even using promotional materials such as posters and container stickers to signpost team members to recycling points and inform them about collection days helps to facilitate a smooth and commercially rewarding operation.






Jonathan Richardson


Jonathan Richardson

Jonathan Richardson is the managing director of Russell Richardson and Sons which has been providing onsite and offsite shredding, data and media destruction, archiving, storage and waste collection services across the United Kingdom for more than 35 years.

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