The waste hierarchy has become the foundation of the UK’s resource strategy, reminding organisations large and small – not to mention the general public – of the need to think carefully about what we do with seemingly redundant materials.
The reduction of waste at source will always remain the priority – prevention is cheaper than cure, after all. But for as long as some people, at least, live with a throwaway mindset, we need to also remember the subsequent layers of the famous waste triangle.
After reuse, comes recycle – one of the most popular drivers for an UNTHA shredder investment. Whether processing plastics or WEEE, confidential waste or metals, it is possible to size-reduce so many material streams to aid their onward recycling.
Size reduction - bulky items are costly to store and transport, so in the most simplistic of terms, shredding can reduce the volume of the materials so that it is easier, cheaper and more environmentally efficient to take them from A to B for recycling.
Material liberation - sometimes many diverse recyclates are contained – locked – within a specific product type. Numerous items of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) for example, contain everything from copper to plastic and even gold! Shredding to liberate all of these multifaceted component parts, means separation technology can then do its job far more effectively.
Remanufacturing - once shredded, the recyclate fraction may then be reinserted back into the same supply chain it first came from, for a closed loop model in the truest sense. Or, it may be remanufactured into an entirely different product – just look at how football shirts can now be made from salvaged plastic bottles! Either way, some resource value of the material is retained, which is of course what the waste hierarchy is striving to achieve.
Fraction consistency - depending on the specific onward recycling process, particle homogeneity may be key to optimal resource recovery. Whether metals are smelted or plastics are to be pelletised for remanufacture, for instance, many clients approach us because an output specification is driving their shredder investment. With thousands of cutter and screen configurations, UNTHA shredders can achieve numerous consistent sizing requirements, ranging from 12 to 400mm.
Compliance - resource compliance is influenced by legislation as well as the waste hierarchy. WEEE must be processed by an authorised specialist at an ATF for example, and ‘dirty plastics’ can no longer be shipped abroad to China. But ongoing regulatory change constantly drives further shredding too. GDPR brought security shredding to the fore for a number of businesses in 2018 for instance, e.g. retailers now have to shred their mail order returns packaging to protect customers’ personal data before it can be recycled. There is an environmental and a compliance box to tick.
Plastic shredding in preparation for granulating
ASR such as cables for liberation of high value non-ferrous metals such as copper
Office whites and PAMS for baling and sending to paper mills
In truth the list goes on – please talk to us about your recycling requirements.
UNTHA’s patented four shaft shredding technology with the most homogenous shred on the market.
UNTHA’s smallest industrial shredder, which provides a neat introduction to the world of shredding mixed on-site ‘waste’.
A high throughput, easy-maintenance shredder with impressive uptime and output particle precision for cost-effective recycling and volume reduction.
“The UNTHA RS100 enables us to size-reduce, liberate and produce a saleable finished product for remanufacturing. We’re striving for nothing less than complete resource recovery. Even in the case of wood waste, we’ve developed an approach which means we can produce a suitable biomass feedstock. This has been a very wise investment for us.”
Rob Fluckiger, managing director
Dates set for UK launch of UNTHA ZR