Defra stats state that as a nation, the UK throws away 15 million tonnes of food waste per year. This is just one figure that illustrates the amount of waste that UK businesses and homes produce, some of which will need the attention of waste disposal companies. These firms either operate on a local level, or are bigger names that have a nationwide presence in the waste industry.
Waste disposal companies exist to do the tasks that we can’t complete ourselves, such as dispose of large volumes of waste or recycling, or deal with materials that have to be safely and/or securely disposed of. Items that fall into the latter category often need special attention for security reasons, or to comply with environmental/legal requirements. Take a look online, and the search results will come up with people that deal with domestic or commercial waste, and under those umbrellas, specialise in a specific type of waste disposal, or offer a broad range of services. Let’s look at the options in more depth:
Domestic Waste Disposal
Domestic waste disposal normally comes into play when there are large amounts of rubbish, or other materials to dispose of, from house clearance when someone dies, to houses that have fallen into disrepair (ever watched the Grime Fighters on TV?), to general waste from building or gardening work. Some older houses that were constructed using asbestos will also need special attention, as this can create serious health problems.
Along with companies that specialise in asbestos removal, other firms working in the domestic sector include skip hire companies, ‘man with a van’ operations that offer an alternative to skip hire, for those looking for general rubbish clearance, and house clearance specialists.
Commercial Waste Disposal
This is a big sector, with a whole range of services on offer to all kinds of businesses from construction, banking, and hospitality, to medical and office buildings. Services on offer can range from day to day rubbish and recycling collections, to site clearance services when companies move or close down.
Many of these companies aim to reduce the environmental impact of waste disposal, and will where possible try and avoid dumping waste on landfill, where in the case of food waste it can break down into harmful greenhouse gases. Large scale operators like Biffa are making full use of Anaerobic Technology to recycle food waste and turn it into biogas, a renewable energy source.
Other commercial waste disposal could involve demolition work, with companies offering demolition and clearance contracts to the construction industry, while many businesses which deal with confidential information will hire a company offering secure shredding services.
Lastly there is hazardous waste, potentially harmful to human health and the environment, and the disposal of this is an important part of the work of many commercial waste disposal companies. The companies that specialise in disposing of this type of waste are specially trained to comply with relevant regulations, and could deal with anything from hospital waste (syringes, dressings), to disposal of chemical waste, oil, and lead acid batteries. There are also firms that deal with broken or unused equipment which might have harmful parts, or substances inside. These include fridges, computer monitors, and televisions.
As you can see, there is a lot more to waste disposal than meets the eye, and many benefits from disposing of it in the right way.