Aug 05, 2014

New UK Waste Regulations – January 1st 2015

Words by Bethany Guard

From January 1st 2015, new UK waste regulations will require businesses to separate recyclable material (paper, plastic, metal and glass) from other waste. This amendment to the EU Waste Framework Directive is to ensure improvement to the quality and quantity of recycling across the UK. This amendment affects household and business waste.

What does this mean for my business?

It means you should ensure dry recyclable waste produced by your business (paper, plastic, metal and glass) is collected separately from other waste, such as food.

To comply with regulations, you should use a Mixed Recycling service for your dry recyclables (paper, plastic, metal and glass) and a General Waste service for anything else.

If you wish to improve your recycling rates further, you can do so by using additional recycling services for food, confidential paper, electronics, batteries, toners, fluorescent tubes and light bulbs. Click herefor a full list of our services.

Do I need to have paper, plastic, metal and glass collected in four separate streams? (For example in four separate bins)

No. European Commission guidance states: “considering that the aim of separate collection is high quality recycling, the introduction of a separate collection system is not necessary if the aim of high quality recycling can be achieved just as well with a form of co-mingled collection.”

High quality recycling can be achieved through First Mile Mixed Recycling collections; we use a modern recovery facility which separates material to a high standard and we welcome customers to tour the facility at any time. Source-separated recycling is only advised if it is Technically, Environmentally, and Economically Practicable (TEEP). It is not technically practicable due to site constraints (lack of space for multiple bins), congested streets and a requirement for daily collections in London. It is not environmentally practicable due to increased CO2 emissions as more vehicles are required. By collecting several materials at the same time we are reducing the number of collection vehicles required and therefore collections will have a lower environmental and economic impact.

Any questions?

If you would like more information on the upcoming waste regulations, or have any questions on your current service, call us any time on 0800 612 9894 and our experts will be ready to help.

We are running free seminars that cover business recycling and the new legislation over the coming months. Anyone is free to attend and you can do so by emailing with your chosen session from the list below:

October 22 - Wallace Space, Covent Garden
November 12 - First Mile Head Office, Highbury & Islington
November 26 - Wallace Space, Covent Garden
December 10 - First Mile Head Office, Highbury & Islington
January 14 - First Mile Head Office, Highbury & Islington


By Bethany Guard


Easy. Smart.

You're two steps away from a cheaper, greener recycling service.

Please enter a vaild UK postcode