We’ve all heard or read stories in the papers when rubbish ends up somewhere it shouldn’t; endangering people and harming the environment. Don’t be afraid to ask where your rubbish ends up once its collected and for the paperwork that accompanies it; for example the Waste Transfer Notes and Waste Management License(s) of the site(s) receiving your waste. It is part of your Duty of Care to know where your waste goes.
By having your waste collected by Westminster you can be assured that everything only ends up where it’s supposed to go. We wouldn’t have it any other way. Most of the waste and recycling we collect is processed within a short drive from Westminster. We use local waste management facilities where waste is either turned into energy for Central London or sorted and prepared for recycling.
Local waste management facilities
We try and keep the waste and recycling we collect as close to where its generated as possible. This significantly limits ‘waste miles’ and the associated traffic congestion and vehicle emissions. For example, the plastic bottles you have placed in your blue recycling bag go via the sorting facility (or MRF) in Southwark, where they are extracted from the mix of materials, to a recycling facility in Dagenham. There they are turned into flakes for new plastic bottles. The same with paper and cardboard; this goes to a mill in Kent where it’s recycled into new cardboard packaging. Electrical appliances go to Sittingbourne where they’re dismantled for recycling. For more information on where all the things we collect go please read here.
Food waste collected from Westminster businesses is turned into biogas and fertiliser at the anaerobic digestion facility. This fertiliser is used on nearby arable land which produces food that will be consumed in London. This closes the loop; ‘what’s grown on the farm returns to the farm‘.
Even the general waste we collect stays local. You might have heard that this year around 3 million tonnes (or 237,000 double-decker buses worth) of commercial waste from the UK is shipped abroad to be burned. Over half of all commercial waste collected by others in Central London now heads that way.
Westminster has taken general waste to SELCHP, a local high performance Energy from Waste (EfW) power station in Deptford, since 1995. There it is burned and turned into electricity and heat which keeps London energised. The red bag of rubbish which you placed out for collection in the morning might power your Tube journey back home in the evening. The heat generated from just one bag of rubbish is also enough to heat 7 hot showers which happens via the District Heating network connected to the facility.
No other waste management provider can offer you such a local closed loop solution in Westminster. Keeping things local makes sense; we keep the new resources required to produce the things we need, we keep costs down but most importantly we’re keeping local people employed.
Over a quarter of the people employed by us and Veolia to collect and manage rubbish in Westminster live locally. We encourage employment from within the Westminster community, for example through our apprentice scheme or the one run by Veolia.
When you contact us our locally based staff will be happy to help, over the phone, by email, by web chat or face to face. Your account manager is also based locally and is always at hand to assist. They know the city very well and have the essential experience in dealing with your business’ typical Central London characteristics. One of our trucks is always near you 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and no job is too big or too small to complete.