Sebastian Waddell of Method Recycling explains how education and centralised waste stations can help reduce businesses’ costs.
Multinational corporations announcing large-scale sustainability commitments has been a common theme of 2019.
As a result, organisations are under increasing pressure to take ownership of their waste. Beyond social pressure, businesses also have to deal with legislative changes, namely the introduction and/or rise of landfill levies.
According to Sebastian Waddell, Method Recycling National Business Development Manager, companies are now further examining how they can reduce and separate waste and recycle more effectively.
Method operates under the philosophy of open plan recycling, where centralised recycling stations replace traditional under desk bins and one source recycling.
According to Sebastian, behavioural change is key to the Method process.
“When bins are hidden away, people often throw their waste away mindlessly, but with our system they are confronted with a choice that forces them to think, what am I holding and where does it go?” he says.
Sebastian says the first stage of switching to Method is preliminary consultation and strategy development.
First, Method contacts the client’s waste contractor to ensure it has the capacity to collect the required source separated streams. If the contractor doesn’t, Sebastian says Method will encourage the client to outsource to an additional contractor.
“Clients often think outsourcing will be an expensive process. However, if their current waste contractor is only collecting two streams, landfill and recycling, they are essentially sending 30 to 50 per cent of their waste to landfill.
“There are significant levy fees attached to landfill disposal, so getting the client to source separate as much as they can by contacting additional parties will drastically reduce waste management overheads.”
Education is the central component of this process, Sebastian says. He says that Method continuously keep its clients up to date on waste levy increases and contamination charges.
After collection is addressed, Method works closely with the client on education programs and system rollouts. “We ask, what has worked for your company in the past? What hasn’t? And what goals do you want to achieve?” We then develop support systems and collateral that underscore the do’s and dont’s of each bin, based on the waste types at that specific organisation.”
Sebastian explains that while most people are open to source separating, individuals who haven’t been exposed to the process before can be hesitant.
“In that case, it’s about working with those objections and helping people understand the benefits of separating their waste,” he says.
“The biggest problem is always the removal of under-desk bins.”
To address under-desk pushback, Method developed the precycler product, which sits on individual desks and allows people to source separate on a micro level.
When an individual then needs to leave their desk, they can take the precycler with them for disposal at a central bin station, Sebastian says
“One of our larger clients has 20 separate offices, and with that level of staff there was bound to be resistance, but after we introduced the precycler opposition dissolved immediately,” he says.
“People are becoming more conscious of their waste and it’s clear that interest is growing. Sustainability is a slow-moving wheel, but we’re getting there.
For more information contact Sebastian Waddell at firstname.lastname@example.org