5 Top FM Tips for Effective Waste Disposal
Facilities management recycling can be rewarding from both a business cost and environmental perspective.
Recycling has become a hot topic in the last decade, evolving from a good idea to a regulatory requirement. Facilities Management recycling is particularly important considering the size of some commercial buildings, but it can be rewarding from both a business and environmental perspective.
As recycling continues to develop, so does the technology. Facility managers will need to continue improving their disposal systems and implement key strategies to achieve the most efficient and cost-effective waste management solution possible.
To help with this, the team at Easi Recycling have put together their top five tips to help facility managers implement their own recycling programme.
Tip#1 – Carry out a waste audit
Whether you manage a shopping centre, office block, hospital or airport, a waste audit helps you to determine the type and volume of waste that’s generated in each area of your facility. One bin fits all rarely works well and bespoke systems should be used depending on what waste is produced by whom and where.
Food waste should be separated at the source, this prevents cross contamination of recyclables, ideally green sealable bags should be used to identify food waste.
General waste is often collected in black bags, this waste should be minimised as is usually hard to sort and often ends up for landfill.
A common mistake is using sorting bins with black waste bags, as this makes waste near impossible to recognise and likely to end up in your landfill skip.
Tip#2 – Optimise your waste collection schedule
It could be a good idea to dust off your contract for waste collections. You may find that you’re paying for a collection service that you don’t need as frequently or is not fully utilised.
Check your bins and skips – make sure the correct waste streams are going into the correct skips. Many waste streams are collected at different rates, and some return a revenue. Are skips full of fresh air? Are your bin bags only 50% full? Small changes can have substantial cost savings.
Compacted bagged waste, before it is disposed of, can make a significant difference. This can either be done mechanically or manually. Easi Recycling’s unique Longopac bagging solutions ensures that waste bags are always 100% filled, reducing plastic waste and bag usage. These bags can be hand squashed, reducing volumes up to 50%.
Tip#3 – Location, location, location…
An effective facilities management recycling programme should allow employees and public to easily collect and sort waste material close to the source of generation. Placing the correct type of container for the right type of waste stream with clear signage, or colour coding, will take away a lot of confusion. For example, mini recycling stations in offices rather than a small bin under every desk, paper collection near photo copiers or food collection points near food prep areas.
It’s much easier to encourage staff and the public to recycle and keep areas clean if the correct bins or stands are in optimal, easy-to-reach locations.
Tip#4 – Use high impact signage
Waste steam labels and recycling poster are vital for success in highly populated areas. A recent study carried out at Toronto University saw the amount of waste that was diverted from landfill by recycling increased by 163% when they used images and colours, as opposed to just text on their signage. A similar high school study also reported an increase of 71% in the waste they diverted from landfill when they used high impact graphics for facility specific waste.
Easi Recycling containers, such as the Bin Multi, simplify sorting your facility waste in a safe and neat manner. Each furniture piece is finished with a clear label with information about the type of waste each opening collects. Bespoke graphics can also be added to make your facility’s bins practical, informative and individual.
You can learn more about Easi Recycling’s Multi Bin Cabinet product here.
Tip#5 – If you can’t measure it, then you can’t improve it
It is a good idea to keep a record from the start of your facility’s recycling programme, such as how much waste the business disposes of, the type of waste streams that are recycled and the diversion rate from the landfill.
Setting targets, making your goals clear to your workforce and reviewing them over time can help provide significant positive recycling results for your facility.