Garbage Removal Companies and the Covid-19 PandemicJune 13, 2020
House Cleanout, Selective Demolition and Strip Out, WirralJuly 3, 2020
Responsible Waste Management Junk Removal, Wirral
Waste management is a major problem that confronts governments everywhere, because the generation of waste is causing untold damage to our environment. The goals our governments are trying to achieve in preventing and minimizing waste can be summed up in the “3Rs rule”, which is, Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle. The ultimate objective in the future is to achieve a level of zero-waste as many people in the UK and US buy into this philosophy and live less wastefully.
Recycle to Conserve
Recycling does more than just keep waste from being disposed of in the local landfills. Materials recovery facility, or Materials recycling facility (MRF), contribute to reducing the waste stream as they process the recycled material (e.g. paper) to sell to manufacturers as raw materials for new products. MRFs therefore not only reduce the demand for the original raw material (e.g. wood), but reduce the pollution associated with processing of the wood.
By recycling your plastic, glass, aluminium, and plastic waste you, are assisting with the manufacture of new products that do not use raw materials. This process of recycling your unwanted trash uses less energy and other limited natural resources than the manufacture of the original product would use.
Recycle to Save Energy
- Recycling one aluminum can save enough energy to power your TV for 3 hours. Recycling 100 cans, can save an amount of energy to light your whole bedroom for up to two weeks. (Source: Go Ever Green)
- The energy saved by recycling 1 glass bottle can power a 100-watt lightbulb for 4 hours. Glass never degrades as it takes up to 4,000 years to break down in a landfill. Luckily, all glass is recyclable to the extent that most bottles and jars are already manufactured using at least 25% recycled glass content. (Source: Conserve Energy Future)
- Recycling paper saves trees and water. Each paper ton produced from the use of material non-recycled uses water, about 7000 gallons. (Source: Recycling Bin) The average UK family throws away 6 trees worth of paper into their household bin each year.
- It takes up to 500 years for plastic items in landfills to decompose, and plastic grocery bags take 1,000 years. Recycling one ton of plastic waste saves about 2,000 pounds of oil, the amount of water that one person uses in two months, and the amount of energy 2 people consume in one year. (Source: thebalancesmb.com)
- Plastic bags in our oceans are the second most common kind of waste item found in coastal cleanups (the most common are cigarette butts). By 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish according to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. (Source: thebalancesmb.com)
In the UK, the recycling rate for household waste was 45.7% in 2017 which was a small increase on the previous year. (Source: https://www.recyclingbins.co.uk/)
This was before the outbreak of COVID-19, which has delivered a health crisis throughout the world. The corona virus spreads easily through close contact between humans, and because it is so deadly, there have been fundamental changes in the way we all live.
With the speed at which the virus spreads throughout the world, the closure of national borders and the end of air travel, environmentalists and scientists tried to demonstrate the positive aspects of the pandemic on the environment with the improvement in air quality as industries shut down, and the reduction in CO2 emissions. The way the virus spreads though, has resulted in environmental issues taking a backseat as containment of this virus has become a priority everywhere.
Changes have taken place in our societies with normal interaction between people curtailed or stopped completely. This pandemic has changed the way we shop, go out to restaurants, and attend social meetings, as this human interaction is a way the virus can spread. Sports have been suspended, and all large social gatherings have been limited.
More Disposable Items Used mean More Waste
Because Covid-19 is a new virus, studies about its behavior are not definitive with the result that there is much conflicting evidence and advice. How long does it live on various surfaces?
- Evidence suggests that the virus can live on surfaces from 24 hours to 5 days, so grocery stores and customers have ditched reusable bags in favour of single use plastic bags for their shopping. If the reusable bags contain the virus, it could survive in shopping carts, on the grocery conveyor belts and may infect the person packing their groceries. This has resulted in the banning of reusable bags in some stores. In the UK, the plastic tax on plastic bags has been dropped for online shopping as a way of speeding up the packing process. This will result in a spike in the number of plastic bags that have to be disposed of, thus adding to the problems of waste removal.
- Disposable coffee cups are back in use at many hot drink outlets, and this will lead to the ditching of billions of these annually for the foreseeable future, adding to the waste removal problem.
- Many dine-in restaurants have closed, so the only way for their survival is to offer a takeaway service. Disposable take-away containers are being used as the use of reusable containers is discouraged for fear of infecting the employees in the restaurants with the virus, and then passing it on to their customers.
- The volume of domestic waste generated by many people having to work from home or self-isolating has increased exponentially with volumes increasing by up to 50%. Local councils have temporarily stopped collecting garden waste and bulky waste due to the increase in household waste. Many councils have also stopped the collection of paper, glass, and plastic from homes.
When the local council waste collection department is unable to collect your waste, a rubbish removal company will be able to assist you. At Junk Removal Wirral, our focus is on the collection and disposal of household, garden, and trade waste efficiently and responsibly. We are licensed and are as committed to a clean environment as you are.
Please call us at 01518 080407 for a free no obligation quote. We look forward to hearing from you.
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