What your waste is turned into | Commercial Recycling News

What your waste is turned into when disposing of it at Commercial Recycling

At Commercial Recycling, we are proud that in 2022 we were able to recycle or recover around 83.85% of waste that was disposed with us. This means that we are sending very little to landfill.

So, what happens to the waste if it isn’t going to landfill? The answer isn’t exactly straight forward as it depends on the material that has been disposed of, so we have written an article on some of the things your waste turns into after being disposed of at our recycling facilities.

Plasterboard

Plasterboard has to be disposed of separately due to the gypsum it contains, which can produce a poisonous gas when disposed of with biodegradable waste.

The separate disposal makes it much easier to recycle the material. The plasterboard is stripped down to its raw materials and the paper and gypsum is separated. The gypsum powder can then be reused in the production of new plasterboard and the paper can be turned into cattle bedding.

UPVC

We get a large amount of UPVC disposed of at our recycling centres. Similar to plasterboard, UPVC has to be disposed of in separate bays to glass, and other waste. This is because this material is easy to recycle when it isn’t contaminated with other products.

At Commercial Recycling we will ask you to remove any plate glass from any UPVC frames before tipping it with us.

Once you have tipped the material with us. It goes through a process of shredding, in which any metals within the frames are pulled and scrapped. The UPVC is then granulated and reused to create new window and door frames.

Glass bottles

Glass bottles are also easy to recycle, which is why we collect them separately from plate glass.

These are washed out and put through a pre-treatment process which removes paper and plastic, using blown air, and metals, using a magnet. The bottles are then crushed and melted ready for the materials to be used in the production of new glass bottles.

This is the same when you recycle glass bottles at home, which is why it is so important that you recycle glass rather than putting them in your general waste bin.

General waste

General waste is slightly more difficult to recycle as it is a combination of items that can not be easily recycled into new products.

However, we are still able to make use of most of the general waste that comes to both our Somerset and Dorset recycling centres.

A variety of processes can be used to turn non-recyclable materials into a fuel which can be used for heat and electricity production. This energy recovery can come from combustion, gasification, pyrolization.

Not only does energy recovery stop waste going to landfill, but it also avoids the use of burning fossil fuels which reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

Energy recovery simply refers to the process which turns waste into energy.

Before the general waste goes to energy recovery, it goes through a picking line which enables us to manually pull out items, such as the items mentioned above, which may be recyclable and that have ended up among mixed waste.

Wood waste

Both of our sites are licensed to accept all types and grades of wood. All wood waste is easy to recycle, so we ensure that none of the wood tipped at our sites goes to landfill.

We separate out any grade A wood from the rest of the pile and deal with that separately.

Any grade B and C wood tipped with us, or found on our picking line, is mixed. It then goes through a shredding process, where magnets are used to remove any door handles, nails, or other bits of metal that might be in the material. Once shredded, it is used as biomass which, through a process of heating and cooling, is used to generate energy.

The plant that we send our mixed wood to exports any energy produced to a grid, providing renewable energy for up to 75,000 local homes.

Mattresses

At some point in our lives, we are all likely to face having to get rid of a mattress. And this poses an interesting question for most of us… What do we do with a mattress we don’t want? Can a mattress be recycled? 

It might be surprising to learn that mattresses can actually be recycled. And the process is quite a fascinating one. 

The mattress, no matter what size, is placed on a spinning table, a team will then manually open the mattress up and separate all the fibres from the frame. All metal and pocket sprung frames are left intact and sent back to the manufacturers. 

At the manufacturers, they will undergo a quality test and if they pass this, will be cleaned and sanitised ready to be used again for a new mattress

There are a number of different fibres used within the mattress, which are all separated from one another. 

The individual fibre types are then baled and used in the textiles industry to make fabrics. Meanwhile, any surplus material is used for energy recovery. 

If it is a foam mattress, they will strip the cover off and bale the foam, ready to be reused.

Please be aware that when disposing of mattresses the new POPs regulations will need to be followed, therefore they will need to be disposed of separately to other waste streams. If you have any questions, please give our friendly team a call on 01202 579579.

Want to tip with us?

We have 2 recycling centres, Canford Recycling Centre in Dorset, and Southwood Recycling Centre in Somerset.

Both of these sites are licensed to accept all of the materials mentioned in this article and all the waste from both sites is used as discussed above.

Both our sites have automated weighbridges and separate waste bays on concrete ground, so that it is quick and easy for you to dispose of your waste with us.

Plus, you can tip more than one waste stream with us in one trip, simply let us know when you arrive and once you have tipped the first waste type, head back over to our weighbridge before tipping another waste type. This simple process can be done as many times as you need.

Opening times vary across the sites, so be sure to check them before you head to your local centre.

If you would like more information on tipping with us or where our waste goes, give us a call on 01202 579579, or email us at enquiries@avonmaterialsupplies.co.uk.

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