Our Opinion

Could water bottles, banana skins and Pringles cans heat your home?

By 10th June 2019 No Comments

Whether it be discarded plastic bags, smashed glass or used nappies, they all represent used products that require appropriate disposal in order to reduce their harmful impact on the environment. Current waste management systems are not fit for purpose, therefore leading to the need for a more resourceful and impactful alternative.

More than 270 million tonnes of waste is recycled worldwide each year, which is the equivalent weight of 740 Empire State Buildings. Ever since the introduction of kerbside collections in the early 1980’s, recycling has been labelled as the environmental answer to Earth’s growing amounts of rubbish.  According to The Bureau of International Recycling, it is now estimated that the waste and recycling industry has developed into a $200 billion global business. In December 2017, China, the once centre of global recycling trade, suddenly shut its doors to imports of recycled materials, quoting that large quantities of the waste were either dirty or hazardous, and therefore a threat to the environment.

So, what are the main issues with current waste management systems?

Too Much Waste

One of the key waste disposal issues is accredited to ‘the generation of too much waste’. The USA alone is responsible for generating upwards of 250 million tonnes of waste per year, which is roughly 2.1kg per person per day. Today, the current population are driven by a ‘throw-away’ consumerism with both businesses and producers motivated to maximise profits by developing single-use products without focusing on reuse, recycling or the use of environmentally-friendly materials.

Landfills Are Not Sustainable

The majority of landfill sites lack appropriate on-site waste management, therefore contributing to additional environmental issues. As landfills reach their capacity (as a number across the UK already are), the alternative options become limited. We can continue digging and produce larger sites; however, this is by no means a long-term solution for an everyday issue that individuals and companies must face regarding their waste disposal.

Hazardous Waste Destroys Environment

When waste is transported to landfills, it is not just the limited space that becomes an issue, the soil, water and air are affected as well. As organic matter gradually decomposes, methane is released, which can be worsened by rainwater depositing toxic materials into local water supplies and severely lessening soil quality. The biodiversity of communities can also become affected by killing or displacing local animals that once inhabited the area. Disruption can be caused, not only by the smell of the waste, but by the vermin that seek new areas to thrive.

Reliance on Dying Technologies

Current waste disposal and management facilities continue to rely on parochial solutions, rather than looking to develop effective programs. Subsequently, there has been a dependence on the use of archaic technologies to deal with modern-day waste disposal issues.

How HERU Helps

HERU aims to provide an environmental solution to this ever-growing global issue. The HERU converts many everyday materials, such as paper and card, plastics, garden clippings, and uneaten foods into fuel for domestic and commercial heating applications.

By converting everyday materials into energy, avoiding the creation of waste, means that the useful outputs (heat energy) are used where they are needed most. Nothing is lost in transportation or requires processing in carbon-intensive infrastructure, which makes the whole process highly-efficient.

Unlike conventional recycling methods, The HERU is able to utilise difficult plastics like yoghurt pots, clingfilm, black food trays, plastic bags from supermarkets and plastics that have been in contact with food, ear wax cleaners and nappies (which traditionally are problematic for recycling).

The HERU puts the decision-making power of resource management into your hands, giving you the choice to reduce your energy bills and stop waste arising.