ECO Plastics has announced an important new long-term partnership with Gwynedd Council. One of the first of its kind in the country, the agreement will see the company receive all the mixed plastic produced direct from the Council.
The decision follows a significant investment by Gwynedd in a new material recycling facility at Caernarfon, allowing the Council to carry out an initial sort of materials collected at kerbside from its 120,000 residents itself.
ECO Plastics will then purchase the material before running it through its own plant, to produce 11 different streams of recyclable plastics. In addition, the contract is the first to include ECO Plastics’ pioneering Supplier Quality Audit (SQA) which enables suppliers to tap into ECO Plastics’ expertise to refine their own processes to produce the most efficient waste streams.
The new streamlined process will require less sorting and will divert more of the council’s tonnage from landfill annually.
At the same time the Council expects to see significant savings and will also be better positioned to comply with the new End Destinations Charter, which encourages local authorities to monitor where their waste will be sent.
Jonathan Short, ECO Plastics – “By eliminating several superfluous sorts, it has ensured that more quality material will be extracted from the process and less material is sent for disposal saving residents money in the process”
Explaining Jonathan Short, deputy chairman of ECO Plastics said: “Gwynedd initially contacted us because of concerns around the final destination of their waste materials. After two members of our SQA team visited Caernarfon to review their process, they decided to move away from segregating different polymers and instead provide a mixed plastics bale direct. By eliminating several superfluous sorts, it has ensured that more quality material will be extracted from the process and less material is sent for disposal saving residents money in the process.
He continued: “The contract is the first in a new business model for ECO Plastics – with the introduction of the End Destinations Charter, many Councils have now committed to tracking where their waste is sent to ensure that it is processed and sold in a responsible and transparent manner. We expect that other authorities will be interested in replicating what Gwynedd has done with this agreement.”
Steffan Jones, senior waste and commissioning manager at Gwynedd Council said: “By processing the material ourselves rather than through a waste management company, this deal creates a new revenue stream from what was previously a cost – not just financially, but also environmentally. The income from our contract with ECO Plastics, savings in waste management company fees and landfill tax, increase in recycling rates and ability to comply with the End Destinations Charter, presents genuine a win-win-win-win scenario for the residents of Gwynedd.
“With the help of ECO Plastics we are now well on the way to reaching the statutory recycling target of 58 percent by March 2016.”