Morrisons Plastic Waste; LCD Recycling; JD Wetherspoon Food Waste

Morrisons Commits To Action Against Plastic Pollution

Morrisons has announced a number of measures to reduce plastic pollution as well as committing that by no later than 2025 all of its own-brand plastic packaging will be reusable, recyclable or compostable. 

Morrisons will also be one of the signatories to WRAP’s UK Plastics PACT, an industry initiative which aims to transform the way businesses use plastic and prevent plastics polluting the environment.

The company is taking steps to reduce plastic pollution which include:

  • Allowing customers to use their own containers for meat and fish from the Morrisons’ Market Street Butcher and Fishmonger counters from May.
  • Working through all of its own brand products to identify, reduce and remove any unnecessary plastic packaging.
  • Trialling the effect of removing plastic packaging from fruit and vegetables in a number of stores. The aim is to look at how plastic packaging, which keeps food fresh, can be reduced without increasing food waste.
  • Making more packaging recyclable. One of the first pieces of packaging to be replaced will be black plastic trays, used for fresh meat and fish. They will be phased out by the end of 2019.
  • Fitting drinking water fountains into new stores. Morrisons has already made water freely available in its cafés for customers who want to refill their water bottles.

Plastic reduction work already completed includes:

  • Morrisons no longer buys plastic drinking straws
  • Morrisons now only buys cotton buds with paper stems rather than plastic ones
  • Morrisons no longer sells 5p single-use carrier bags

Veolia Brings First Electric Street Cleansing Vehicles To London Streets

Veolia has introduced its zero emission electric street sweeping vehicles – its first in London and the UK – to Lambeth. 

The five new electric sweepers have been purchased instead of diesel alternatives and between them will save 78 tonnes of carbon dioxide from entering the environment each year.

That’s the equivalent of 33 passenger cars being removed from the road.

A successful trial of the sweepers in Lambeth confirmed the electric vehicles maintained the same work performance as diesel, while eliminating emissions to zero and bringing additional benefits such as less maintenance, lower noise output and a 70% reduction of water use.

Veolia has been trialling alternative fuel solutions for its vehicles since 2012 and is now ideally placed to support its customers as London moves towards the Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) targets being introduced in 2019. 

New Technology To Help Clear LCD Waste

A partnership of researchers, recyclers and engineers have united their expertise to solve the LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) stockpiling issue in Europe.

The ALR3000TM machine processes 60 LCD screens per hour and is modular for scalability. A commercial full-scale unit has been developed across a three-year Eco-innovation project called ReVolv, by a consortium led by Votechnik and the University of Limerick.

LCDs contain hazardous substances and are currently largely disassembled manually, making the process slow and expensive and resulting in the stockpiling of LCD screens at recycling plants across Europe. LCDs are subject to an EU Directive that stipulates that the mercury and liquid crystals must be removed, so it is essential that they are treated correctly.

Globally, there were 217mLCD televisions sold up to the end of 2013. These have an expected lifespan of around 8 years which means these products are now in the
waste stream and requiring treatment

The machine quickly and safely removes components containing hazardous substances from the LCDs, such as mercury containing lamps, and presents the separate fractions of the non-hazardous materials ready for recycling. These materials include in-demand critical raw materials like indium and other valuable materials, for instance the plastics contained in the screens.

The technology is currently being demonstrated in Ireland and is available for potential customers to see in action.

Walk For WasteAid 2018 Raises Over £10,000

The Walk for WasteAid 2018 has raised over £10,000 to support better waste management around the world.

More than 100 supporters turned out for the 25km walk across the city of London on Saturday 23 June, zigzagging across the River Thames from Putney to Tower Bridge.

WasteAid Head of Communications, Zoë Lenkiewicz, said: “Waste management is a hugely neglected area around the world. Our annual fundraiser draws attention to the issue and the positive work being done by WasteAid to share recycling know-how with poorer communities, and we’d like to say a massive thank you to everyone involved in this year’s successful Walk for WasteAid.”

This was the third Walk for WasteAid, and the first in London, with previous years seeing supporters climb Mount Snowdon and Scafell Pike.

The walkers started at Putney Bridge, and were hosted at Vauxhaull City Farm for lunch. Wybone leant litter pickers so walkers could clean the streets of London on their way, and Veolia collected the waste at the end of the walk.

Everyone who made it across the finishing line received a 3D printed medal made from recycled plastic by Singular MARS, with recycled ribbon donated by TRAID. London food waste fighters Day Old provided snacks at the end using food that would otherwise have gone to landfill.

JD Wetherspoon Partners With Fareshare To Reduce Food Waste

One of the UK’s largest pub chains has partnered with food redistribution charity FareShare to reduce its food waste and support those at risk of food insecurity.

JD Wetherspoon, which owns 880 pubs across the UK, has committed to not only donating but also delivering quality surplus meats, chips, ready meals and desserts to FareShare.

So far, the pub chain has provided surplus food provisions amounting to over 1.7 tonnes – equivalent to a phenomenal 4,000 meals. The donations have supported more than 100 charities and community groups which include homeless hostels, breakfast clubs and domestic refuges.

Wetherspoon has now agreed to provide regular deliveries of quality meat, ready meals and potatoes to five FareShare regional centres including Hull, Speke, Manchester, Preston and Newcastle. The food will be provided to the centres on a trial basis until July – and if successful, could be rolled out to the rest of the country.

Food provided by Wetherspoon has become surplus as a result of menu changes and damaged outer cases which, although not harming the food, are costly to rework for commercial sale.

Annual figures recently released by FareShare revealed that the charity is now helping to feed a record 772,000 people a week – 60% more than the previous year. With one in eight people in the UK going hungry every day, Wetherspoon’s donations will be of great value and use to local frontline charities across the five regions.

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