With just two months to go until the new workplace recycling law comes into effect, organisations across Pembrokeshire are preparing for the change.
From 6 April, it will become law for all businesses, charities, and public sector organisations to sort their waste for recycling, in the same way as households do across most of Wales.
Marten Lewis, Director of Sustainability at Bluestone said: “Sustainability is already at the heart of our culture, so recycling has always been a top priority, and what we can’t recycle, we send to a waste-to-energy plant. This means that less than 1% of our waste ends up in landfill.
“However, since installing new bins across our site for the separation of our recyclable waste, we have noticed that there is a lot less cross contamination.
“The right items are ending up in the right bins, meaning that the quality of the waste we are sending for recycling has improved by more than half.”
Marten added: “We wanted to ensure that the changes were implemented and communicated well in advance of the law change.
“We can already see the difference the new bins are making in the quality of our recyclable waste and the feedback from both staff and guests has been positive.
“Our target now is to focus on our black bin waste, as we have noticed that people are still putting recyclable items in with the main rubbish, so there is room for improvement there.
“However, once this is addressed, we are confident that over time we will further reduce the volume of general waste and see our recycling rates increasing even more.”
These changes in the separation of waste will improve both the quality and quantity of recycling, while also helping to tackle the climate and nature emergencies.
It’s an important step to creating a circular economy, while also laying the foundations for a cleaner, greener Wales for future generations.
Julie James, Minister for Climate Change said: “Wales’s new workplace recycling law will help improve both the volume and quality of recycling we collect each year.
“This is not only important in delivering against the climate and nature emergency but will crucially also deliver benefits to the economy by capturing a resilient supply of high-quality recycled materials.
“This shows how we can work together to reduce our environmental impact and lay the foundations for a stronger, greener economy.”
Executive Director of the Environmental Services Association, Jacob Hayler, said: “The new Workplace Recycling Regulations mark another large step forward for Welsh recycling, building on the successful household system.
“The recycling and waste management industry very much supports measures to harmonise requirements, which reduces confusion, increases participation, and boosts performance.
“The certainty that clear and timely regulation provides also enables industry to invest in, and deliver, the services needed to support higher recycling rates.”
It will be responsibility of each workplace to ensure recycling is separated for collection.
If multiple workplaces are in a shared location, the collection should be agreed with the landlord or facilities manager if a central recycling system is required.
In just 20 years, Wales has gone from recycling less than 5% to recycling over 65% of our waste and is ranked third in the world for household recycling rates. This helps to save around 400,000 tonnes of carbon emissions every year.
The new law will help to continue to increase recycling rates while supporting Wales’ commitment to become a zero-waste nation by 2050.
For more information on how the changes will affect your workplace and for guidance on what you need to do visit www.gov.wales/workplacerecycling