From environmentally friendly dry waste disposal through to plastic recycling, adopting a ‘green’ approach to waste management does more than just save the planet – it also has benefits for local communities in Wales.
Welsh community recycling programmes raise awareness about waste recycling and encourage people to do it more diligently. This has a knock-on effect. Local schemes can start small, but as families become more interested in recycling and the environmental benefits, they tend to end up doing more to help the planet – whether that’s buying a composter, ensuring that they recycle all plastics and cardboards, reducing waste at home or finding ways to reuse items rather than automatically buying replacements.
GD Environmental is one example of a ‘green’ waste management service that is helping Welsh communities to manage their waste in a more environmentally friendly way, reducing landfill and finding ways to extract energy from rubbish, such as with waste transfer stations, combined heat and power plants. Recycling brings plenty of business opportunities and the chance to create new, skilled jobs to local communities, as new life is extracted from materials which would once have simply disappeared off to landfill. From creative local start-ups that take unwanted supermarket food and divert it away from landfill to make local preserves, to entrepreneurs who take restaurant oil waste and convert it into biofuel, and even through to local craftspeople who use tipped furniture to ‘up-cycle’, restore and sell, there are opportunities for ‘green’ entrepreneurs everywhere!
Local community investment
Community waste recycling also leads to other opportunities in green energy micro-production. For example, combined heat and power plants burn rubbish and use it to power turbines that generate electricity for local use. Communities can also invest in local schemes and micro-energy schemes such as solar PV and wind turbines, in order to be energy self-sufficient, reduce greenhouse gases and obtain a financial return.
Educating the next generation
Crucially, recycling and adopting green and visible initiatives at a community level helps to educate the next generation in environmental issues and encourages their innovation and creativity to discover new solutions to tackle our waste in Wales.