Monday, 23 December 2013

Merry #Christmas and Happy New Year from EMERGE #recycling

Well, there goes another year, sure goes quick doesn't it? Time flies when you're having fun, and it's been another great year for EMERGE- we've just announced our acquisition of Green Reaper recycling, which is a huge leap forward towards growing our operations across the North West. Read more about this exciting piece of news here.

We'd like to offer you our best wishes for the festive period, and a few top tips for avoiding the wastefulness that unfortunately is all too common at this time of year.

1. Get merry with as many friends and family as possible – it is much more
efficient to heat one home instead of two, three or four! Great excuse
for a party!


2. If you get presents you are not that keen on (admit it...we might get
one!) – keep it and donate it to your local charity shop!


3. Save and reuse wrapping paper / gift bags / labels where possible!
Recycle your paper and card, along with any packaging from food.

Keep in mind if your recycling collections have changed days due to the
bank holidays! You local Council website will have this information.


4. Shop local - buy your turkey and / or your vegetables from your local
butcher/greengrocer!


5. Turkey has a much lower carbon footprint than beef!


6. Be creative with your leftovers...Turkey Curry or Pea and Ham soup
anyone?


7. Try not to forget to freeze leftovers or use products by their use by
date. No one wants to be ill over the festive period!

8. Donate any unwanted food to your local foodbank.

9. Wrap up in a warm and festive Christmas jumper! And store it safely
ready to wear again next year!

10. Drawing the curtains when it starts to get dark keeps the heat in!


11. Did you know real Christmas trees have a much lower carbon footprint one
than an artificial one? If you do have an artificial tree, try and use
it for as many years as possible (to match the footprint of a real one
you will need to use it for at least ten years!).

12. Have you got a real Christmas tree? If so don't forget to dispose of it
properly (chipped or burned)!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!


EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Searching for #sustainable wood? Use our #woodwaste collectionservice! #manchester




EMERGE works with the National Community Wood Recycling scheme collecting redundant wood from construction companies. We now provide a wood waste collection service across the North West and neighbouring area.

We divert this precious resource from unsustainable disposal routes and create work and training opportunities for local disadvantaged people into the bargain.

Our service is cheaper than normal skip hire and enables companies to reduce disposal costs, increase their recycling rates and enhance their green credentials.

To find out more call us now on 0161 223 8200 or leah@emergemanchester.co.uk or check out our website.

Come and visit us and see our range of wood for DIY and building purposes Unit 5 on New Smithfield Market or call us for more info.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Guest blog from @JunkWize "A #CircularEconomy: The gift that keeps on giving"

In December 2012 the European Commission published a Manifesto for a Resource-Efficient Europe. In its opening line it stated that “in a world with growing pressures on resources and the environment, the EU has no choice but to go for the transition to a resource-efficient and ultimately regenerative circular economy”. Now, whatever your views are on the EU, you’d be hard pushed to criticise the basic philosophy behind that statement. But are there any downsides or major obstacles standing in the way of the actual creation of a circular economy?

In other words, what are the potential sticking points with having an economy where things are created with the intention that they will be used, reused and recycled? Well, we had a brainstorm at JunkWize and this is what we came up with:

  • The mass collaboration of different organisations and people with very different intentions would be needed.
  • Planned obsolescence is a well-known technique in the fashion and technology sectors, so the way those products are made would need to change.
  • In some cases costs can increase for businesses if they want to make new products with recycled materials. The processing and management costs of recycling something can be greater that making it from scratch.
  • Not all things can be recycled.
  • Not everyone wants a recycled product due to perceived dirtiness and weakness.
  • Recycling is seen by many people as a chore so they don’t do it. Recycling would need to become effortless if a circular economy was to work.

Yet the more we discussed these ‘problems’, the more we realised that in actual fact almost every sector in the economy (cars, clothing, packaging etc.) has dipped its toe into the circular economy model already without experiencing ill effect.

VW has been using a significant amount of recycled materials in its cars for years. In 2009 they proudly announced that the MV VI Golf was made from over 40% recycled materials. What’s significant about projects like this is that they were not small scale (since 1974 over 2000 Golfs have been sold daily).

Even Nike is getting in on the act. The company that turns over £15 billion per annum has said publicly that “we will be providing products that allow businesses to grow, are profitable, meet the demands of shareholders but are also de-coupled from scarce resources.” Since 1990 Nike have also been recycling millions of their shoes into new shoes and sports track and court playing surfaces.
So it’s clear that if recycling is done correctly then profits can increase for the product creators as well.

This all shows that recycling and profitability are not diametrically opposed to one another. Quite the opposite, in fact. Take JunkWize as an example. If it weren’t for waste and recycling then the company wouldn’t exist and we’d all be out of a job!

So how do we get more and more people to commit to the circular economy? From our point of view we feel that the one link in the chain that is weakest is the recycling sector. If our politicians are serious about getting us to reduce, reuse and recycle, then the recycling sector needs to be expanded rapidly. Designers and manufacturers also need to create uses for materials which at present simply cannot be recycled.

So we already live in an economy that in a large part is circular already. Now we just need to foster the growth and make sure that it’s clear to people that there are no downsides to committing to it.

This article was written for EMERGE by JunkWize; a Greater London serving rubbish clearance company. Just like EMERGE, JunkWize are a local solution provider with a strong '3Rs' ethos; they recycle as much of the rubbish they collect as possible and they only use landfill as the very last resort. They have a licence from the Environment Agency and they have just celebrated their first year in business.



EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

#Foodwaste #Foodpoverty and #WFD2013

Wednesday 16th October marks World Food Day, part of a growing number of international campaigns to tackle hunger worldwide. Food poverty is arguably humanity's weakest link in the 21st Century, and it's a growing problem even in The UK. According to new figures, the number of people relying on food banks in this country has TRIPLED in the last year. Emerge's sister charity FareShare North West tackles food poverty in Manchester by working with the commercial sector to divert perfectly edible food that would normally be sent to landfill to those who need it most, providing a double benefit.

Food waste is inextricably linked with food poverty- there is enough food to feed everyone on the planet, but around one third of it is thrown away. It is also inextricably linked with our climate- global food waste has a bigger carbon footprint than every country in the world after China and the USA. We have a great opportunity here to hit two huge scary birds with one stone, and organisations like FareShare aim to do just this.




Sources
http://www.fao.org/docrep/018/i3347e/i3347e.pdf
http://grist.org/article/10-things-to-know-about-food-on-world-food-day/

EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Calling #Manchester #business, @EMERGERecycling teaming up with @EveryCanCounts #csr

EMERGE is teaming up with the Every Can Counts programme this autumn to help local businesses increase the amount of beverage cans they recycle.  We'll be sending out details shortly of the official launch event - so keep an eye open for more news.

Every Can Counts is an award-winning communications programme developed by the drinks can manufacturing and recycling industry. Over the past four years it has helped over 1000 businesses in the UK set up and run successful recycling initiatives.

So, whether you’re looking to improve your existing recycling scheme or develop your Corporate Social Responsibility, Every Can Counts and EMERGE can help YOU! 



EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

The alarming links between #FoodWaste, Society and #Climate #IPCC

Here at EMERGE we know a fair bit about food waste. Our sister charity, FareShare North West, combats food poverty (a growing issue not only in Greater Manchester but across the globe) by tapping into the huge amount of perfectly edible food from the commercial sector that would normally get sent to landfill because of excess product, damaged packaging and the like.

Wasting food when it is so scarce for certain parts of society is a silly thing to be doing, but landfilling this waste brings about a whole host of environmental problems, particularly in relation to climate change. Decaying food waste in landfills releases huge amounts of avoidable greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, and with the IPCC's (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) recent announcement about their most up-to-date findings on climate science (basically, we're not heading down a pleasant road, no matter how much the Daily Mail tries to skew the story (they're getting pretty well known for doing that at the moment)), this is an alarming problem.

A recent report from the FAO (the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation), which is a great read if you have the time, presents a slightly unorthodox but nevertheless astonishing fact that shows just how much of an impact food waste has on the planet. Apparently, if it were a country (stay with me here), food waste would have the third largest carbon footprint in the world, behind China and the US. In more local terms, it means that the carbon footprint of global food waste eclipses the carbon footprint of our whole country!

Food waste stacked up against the world's biggest carbon emitters. Not to scale.


Thankfully the issue is now getting national political attention. At their annual Party Conference last month, Labour announced that, if they won the election in 2015, they would ban the landfilling of food waste. Bringing about greater stewardship of our food networks through national policies like this can only be good, not just for society, but for the planet too.


EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

#ConfidentialWaste Shredding in #Manchester from EMERGE!

Did you know that your business could be liable for a fine of up to £500,000 if confidential information about customers, clients, service users or patients gets into the public domain, whether by accident or carelessness?

Just this summer, one North West organisation has been fined £80,000 for leaving behind boxes of confidential personal information in a building that was being sold to a new occupier. The Information Commissioner will hand out hefty fines if there is evidence that your organisation has breached the Data Protection Act, knowingly or not.

Now that so much data is stored in digital and electronic forms, it may be easy to take your eye off the ball where paper records are concerned, partly because of the extra physical and storage efforts involved. And environmentally-conscious companies and staff may think that putting paperwork in the recycling bin will resolve the problem about disposal.

"As the example above shows, you need to be just as meticulous about paper as about computer data," explains Lucy Danger, CEO of EMERGE. "That’s why we have developed a service specifically to ensure that businesses stay within the law when they need to dispose of old paperwork."

"We can deal with all your confidential waste by storing the material in robust, locked containers, transporting it in a secure vehicle, where it will be shredded at our premises under highly controlled conditions. All shredded paper is taken directly to a recycling reprocessor to be pulped and made into new paper.

EMERGE issues you with a Certificate of Secure Destruction as evidence that your material has been disposed of confidentially."

For more information about our confidential shredding service, or to find out about our highly competitive rates, please visit our website or call Leah on 0161 223 8200.



EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Are we finally ready to kill off the plastic bag?

This weekend, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg will announce that a 5p tax on supermarket plastic bags should come into play in England by the end of 2015, bringing us in line with Wales and Northern Ireland, who already have a charge in place, and Scotland, where it will be introduced this time next year.

Calls for plastic bag charges in England have been steadily increasing in recent months, and why not -  usage has dropped by up to 80% in Wales and Northern Ireland since charges were introduced. This can only mean good news for the environment.

  


The revenue from the tax will be used for environmental and charity initiatives and the move will be widely supported by the environmental and waste management sectors. However, let's not get carried away. Dealing with plastic bags has long been a tagline when the subject of 'environmental protection' is mentioned in political circles in the UK, but it's important not to see it as the be all and end all of our waste problem, as Friends of the Earth spokesperson Craig Bennett told the BBC: "This small step will do little to tackle the nation's huge waste mountain and can't disguise the government's woeful green record."

These are tough times, and tackling environmental problems through taxes picked up by consumers isn't ideal. However, it is having the desired effect in Wales and Northern Ireland, and there's no reason it can't work here. I think we should welcome this small charge, providing that any revenue goes towards supporting environmental projects, but at the same time remain aware that this isn't a get out of jail free card for policymakers- so much more action will be needed if the UK is to build a greener future.


EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Planned Obsolescence II - A New Hope?

Further to our previous blog post on planned obsolescence this week, it's worth sharing this promotional video for Phonebloks, a novel concept for a new mobile phone which is engineered to be extensively repairable and upgradable- a phone built to last!





It works on the premise of manufacturers collaborating together on an open platform to provide different replaceable 'bloks'. This in itself is clearly a huge barrier to the project, as it's always going to be difficult to get corporations to work together to provide a new product which is specifically designed to last - and therefore reduce consumption and profit. That's why Phonebloks is calling for our help to shout out support for the idea across the web and get manufacturers' attention. I'm not sure it'll work immediately, but these sort of concepts are going to be needed if we're ever going to achieve the goal of a more sustainable society. For that reason alone, it deserves our support.


EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Planned Obsolescence- What a load of rubbish!


Educational, very amusing and very very infuriating. Perfect watching for a midweek lunch break, then!

This video is a timely reminder outlining the pressing need for a change in the engineering of 21st century consumerism and our throw-away culture. (Credit goes to Australian TV show The Checkout.)








EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. Our business services include everything from recycling collections to confidential document shredding.  

We are now working in partnership with Cooler Projects to deliver carbon literacy training for businesses across Greater Manchester.  For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new pop-up shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme.  Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Help your business tap into the future

I thought I'd share with you a recent poll (pdf) I found whilst researching passing the time, which forecasts the environmental views of tomorrow's generation. On first impression, it may not seem too relevant to us in Manchester. The poll was conducted in the US, and focuses on the political views of young people with regard to the Democratic-Republican spectrum. HOWEVER, do not think that it means nothing to us over here. Allow me to explain.

Basically, the future consumers, citizens and leaders of this world are on the whole very interested in all this environmental lark (for the basis of argument I'm assuming that the views of America's youth sort of match the views of UK's youth, which is a fair assumption in the globalised world us young'uns inhabit). No matter what political side of the spectrum young people seem to inhabit, the majority would vote for someone who places high priority on protecting the environment.

This is important news, not just for politics, but for businesses wanting to tap into the interests of future consumers. If you want to make it in tomorrow's world, you will need to have a credible environmental record. Recycling is the first step on this journey, and also the easiest.

For businesses in Greater Manchester, EMERGE can help you get started. We provide full recycling services, including dealing with confidential waste, as well as helpful consultancy services, advice, and carbon literacy training for your staff. Also, if you don't mind me saying so, we are very very nice people. Ethical community-focused business practice is at the core of what we do. And that's what future consumers will be looking for. Take a look at our website for a full list of services and how to contact us.




EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. 

We are now working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with actions you can do to reduce it. 
For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new Pop-Up Shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme. We have cards, soaps, jewellery, second hand books, clothes, records, bric a brac and lots of gift ideas from the cheap and cheerful to great works of art! 
Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Zero Waste Week- taking stock of our food waste problem

Today is the last day of national Zero Waste Week. Hopefully, you may have caught wind of this in advance, and if so, I hope you've had a successful time trimming the pounds off your bin bags. If not, I'll fill you in.

This year the focus was on reducing food waste and is being done in partnership with The Rubbish Diet, which is not just a clever name but also a very educational food waste website. Now, this subject has already been in the news a lot over the past few months, as we've documented ourselves. One of our regular bloggers, Debbie, has even provided a short list of easy tips to help reduce your food waste. Food wastage is all the more important when we take a moment to consider the wider environmental issues around global food security. For a quick easy-watching video on this latter topic, take a look here.

EMERGE's sister charity, FareShare North West, focuses on harnessing Manchester's commercial food waste and donating it to those in food poverty. this is a great initiative that provides a vital service for those in need in Greater Manchester. For more information, take a look at our website.

For advice and information on helping to reduce food waste in your business, contact us! This is an important issue, so help us help you help all of us.


EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. 

We are now working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with actions you can do to reduce it. 
For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new Pop-Up Shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme. We have cards, soaps, jewellery, second hand books, clothes, records, bric a brac and lots of gift ideas from the cheap and cheerful to great works of art! 
Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Friday, 6 September 2013

Call for action: help improve the EU's recycling targets!

In our 21st Century world, recycling is finally getting the attention it deserves as a vitally important process in society. We are steadily moving towards what is known as a circular economy, where recycling waste will play a central role.

The EU is currently reviewing its recycling target for 2020, which currently stands at 50%. But, as Friends of the Earth note, it could be so much higher. We'll need to be more ambitious if we want to ensure a cleaner environment and an economy that has a healthy consumption of resources. Please sign this petition calling for higher recycling targets in the EU! We only have until 10th September to make our voices heard on this issue, and it'll only take you a minute.

If you run a business that aims for higher recycling rates, contact us! Take a look at what EMERGE can offer you.





EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. 

We are now working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with actions you can do to reduce it. 
For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new Pop-Up Shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme. We have cards, soaps, jewellery, second hand books, clothes, records, bric a brac and lots of gift ideas from the cheap and cheerful to great works of art! 
Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Friday, 30 August 2013

Change the way you think about resource use

Today we're sharing fine piece of short film from the folks at WWF on changing the way we think about our every day use of resources. Worth a watch!






In other news, look lively, folks! Next week is Zero Waste Week 2013! Sign up and make a waste-reduction pledge today. More on that coming soon!



EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. 

We are now working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with actions you can do to reduce it. 
For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new Pop-Up Shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme. We have cards, soaps, jewellery, second hand books, clothes, records, bric a brac and lots of gift ideas from the cheap and cheerful to great works of art! 
Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Friday, 23 August 2013

Earth Overshoot Day

Earlier this week it was Earth Overshoot Day. How does one celebrate this calendar milestone, I hear you ask. Well, you don't. This is not a happy occasion. Buying each other gifts will just make it worse.

20th August 2013 marks the day, estimated by sustainability NGO Global Footprint Network, where we have used up all the natural resources that Earth is able to replenish in one year. In other words, we have used up our allocation of natural resources for the year, and are now effectively stealing from the future. Every single thing we consume from now on is theft, committed by us, on our children and grandchildren.



Scary isn't it. Even more scarily, the chaps at Global Footprint Network note that Earth Overshoot Day is coming around earlier and earlier each year. We are running up a huge ecological debt, borrowing from a bank that is fast running out of money. For more info on Earth Overshoot Day, click here.

Recycling is really important in this context. Let's not be wasteful with resources, we owe it to tomorrow. To get your company or organisation more resource-conscious, take a look at EMERGE's recycling services. Help us help you to help all of us push Earth Overshoot Day off our business calendars.




EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. 

We now offer Confidential Document Shredding services!
We are working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with actions you can do to reduce it. 
For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new Pop-Up Shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme. We have cards, soaps, jewellery, second hand books, clothes, records, bric a brac and lots of gift ideas from the cheap and cheerful to great works of art! 
Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Monday, 19 August 2013

Revive Arrives: GM Compost now available!

In case you haven't already heard, residents of Greater Manchester can now buy local compost produced from our very own food and garden household waste!

'Revive' is a blended multi-purpose peat-free compost, with up to 80% of the ingredients coming straight out of GM residents' food and waste bins! After being collected from our homes, the waste goes through a large-scale but simple composting process called In Vessel Composting (IVC for short) in one of four facilities across GM, taking just six weeks to be transformed into a high quality compost ready to go straight into your back garden to bring your azaleas back to life.

With up to half of GM's household waste being compostable, IVC has the potential to divert a huge portion of waste away from landfill and put it to use as a new resource. If you fancy learning a bit more about how IVC works, check out the educational video below from Recycle for Greater Manchester.






Revive is available for residents to buy at a very competitive price from nine locations across GM. For more information click here.


EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. 

We are now working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with actions you can do to reduce it. 
For more info see www.carbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Visit our new Pop-Up Shop in Manchester city centre! Promoting the 3Rs of waste reduction, reuse and recyling, we are selling goodies and local arts and crafts with a 'Made in Manchester' theme. We have cards, soaps, jewellery, second hand books, clothes, records, bric a brac and lots of gift ideas from the cheap and cheerful to great works of art! 
Find us at Brazennose House West, Brazennose St, M2 5AS. Opening hours are usually 12-5pm Wed-Sat but are subject to change. Please contact office@emergemanchester.co.uk for more info.

Monday, 5 August 2013

And then came the storms. And the waste...

The weather in the last few weeks has been brilliant (if you like the sun- I know a lot of British people seem allergic to it, including me- I've been slathering on suncream in Manchester like it's the Costa Del Sol). Thousands of us have flocked to the coast to enjoy it. Ice creams all round. But then came the storms...

Let's face it, it wasn't going to last forever was it. So we've had our fun, now it's time to get back to business. And on that note, this stormy weather is throwing up a waste-related reminder from nature, as a recent BBC News feature highlights. 

Like a bad conscience, the stormy weather is washing up a lot of trash on our shores. According to the Marine Conservation Society spokesperson interviewed by the BBC, around two-thirds of what washes up is plastic. Not good for the ocean, and not good for us either:

"Even the smallest plastic waste, such as particles known as "nurdles", pose dangers. Small creatures can mistake them for food and die from ingesting them, in turn denying larger animals the prey they need to survive. Plastic bags are particularly fatal because they can block digestive systems when mistaken for jellyfish by larger animals, leading to starvation and death. Bags have been recovered from the stomachs of beached turtles and whales around the UK coast. Also, biologists are becoming concerned that toxins in this micro-plastic waste are transferred through species with unknown effects."



Where do we even begin to start tackling this? Well, by REDUCING THE AMOUNT OF WASTE WE CREATE. Simple. And it's EMERGE's aim to do just that in Greater Manchester. Interested in upping your recycling and reducing waste for your business? Contact us today!

EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. We are now working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. 
This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with actions you can do to reduce it. For more info see www.manchestercarbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Recycling the Unrecyclable and the Circular Economy

By now we should all be recycling- in 21st century society there really is little excuse for not putting things in the right bin. But do we actually recycle everything that can be recycled? We all come across things that don't quite belong in any of our recycling bins, but at the same time it doesn't quite seem right throwing them out in the garbage.

Fear not. We're taking baby steps towards a 'circular economy' and this is all just part of the process. Gradually, more and more things will become widely recyclable as the life of manufactured products become sustainable closed loops. Manufacture, use, recycle, remanufacture. That's the future.


Taken from ESA's Circular Economy report (see below)


Increasingly, the business world is playing a part in this process, taking things previously difficult to recycle or unrecyclable and reforming them into new products. Blogger Sophia Evans has found a few examples for us (thanks Sophia!):

- Increasingly, you can find recycled precious metals in the jewellery industry. Various companies now recycle old silver, platinum and gold products into new ones. Metals are refined and remixed into alloys before being casted into new designs. These recycling efforts reduce the harmful environmental effects and inhumane labour practices of much of the world’s precious metal mining industries. Precious metals can be repeatedly recycled without losing quality, making them a naturally sustainable resource.

- The Nike corporation has been recycling old sports shoes into playground surfaces for communities since 1990. They've ground up approximately 28 million shoes and 36,000 tons of scrap material and, with it, covered as much surface area as the entire island of Manhattan.

- Notice how you can't recycle bottle caps in your home recycling bins? This type of plastic is still recyclable. Personal care corporation Aveda now produces 100% post-consumer PET packaging for its products. Its Recycled Caps programme, which has been running since 2008, collects bottle caps from all sorts of products, sorts them, melts them down into pellets and turns them into new bottle caps for products.

- Did you know you could recycle makeup? After one or two years, makeup and cosmetics items lose their freshness and effectiveness and should be discarded. Expired, yet usable, items such as half-used lipstick or cracked eye shadow pots can be recycled at a number of places. Origins stores accept empty cosmetics containers, including jars, bottles, compacts and tubes, for recycling.


If you would like to learn more about the concept of a circular economy in the UK, this report from the Environmental Services Association is a great resource. As the report states, the waste and resources industry is central in the move towards a circular economy. This is where organisations like EMERGE come in. We take businesses' end of use materials and help return them back to the economy efficiently and ethically. Find out more about our business services here

EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. We are now working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. 
This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with actions you can do to reduce it. For more info see www.manchestercarbonliteracy.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 


Monday, 3 June 2013

What does it mean to be ‘Carbon Neutral’?


Climate change and global warming have already had observable negative effects on the environment and people. Because the primary cause of global warming is the build up of greenhouse gases (e.g. carbon dioxide) in the atmosphere and that these gases are produced by everyone, an increasing number of organisations and individuals are taking steps to reduce the amount they create in order to slow global warming. Some organisations, such as UK health and beauty products retailer Neal’s Yard Remedies, have taken a step further by becoming carbon neutral.


Carbon neutral, or having a net zero carbon footprint, refers to achieving net zero carbon emissions by balancing a measured amount of carbon released with an equivalent amount sequestered or offset. In the case of Neal’s Yard Remedies, for example, it is used in the context of carbon dioxide releasing processes associated with direct and indirect operations at the company’s head office, production facility and company owned shops including travel, energy and waste disposal.
 
The common practice for organizations seeking carbon neutral status entails reducing carbon emissions (e.g. by improving energy efficiency, using a renewable energy supplier or recycling) and/or avoiding them first so that only unavoidable emissions are offset. Carbon offsetting means paying others to
remove or sequester 100% of the carbon dioxide emitted from the atmosphere – for example by planting trees, by funding 'carbon projects' that should lead to the prevention of future greenhouse gas emissions, or by buying carbon credits to remove them through carbon trading. 

About Neal’s Yard Remedies
Neal's Yard Remedies are a leading independent British retailer of organic natural health and beauty products. They are the first High street retailer to become Carbon Neutral. To find out more please visit www.nealsyardremedies.com.


EMERGE provides environmental education and advice on resource management, waste composition and sustainable procurement issues. We are now working in partnership with Cooler to deliver ‘Carbon Literacy’ trainings for businesses across Greater Manchester. 
This is a relevant, informative and practical training – you will return to your desk/vehicle/role knowing what your personal carbon footprint is and with ideas you can do to reduce it. For more info see www.coolerprojects.com or speak to Liz Lauder on 0161 223 8200 to book your places. 



Friday, 31 May 2013

Why bleach is not always the solution you need


Many cleaners contain chlorine bleach because of the whitening power bleach possesses, but there are many hazardous health-related and inconvenient factors involved in bleach-based cleaners that should be considered. Bleach is a disinfectant with germ-killing properties, but the potential toxicity of the product leads many consumers and businesses to find alternative cleaners.

Definition


Chlorine bleach contains sodium hypochlorite. This is a chemical compound that takes the form of powder, pellets and liquids. The odour of chlorine bleach is distinctive and often discernible in pool cleaners, household cleaners, laundry and dish detergents and disinfectants. Bleach is not flammable by itself but when mixed with other materials, such as ammonia, can have explosive results. Bleach is poisonous and corrosive when ingested and corrosive to skin and soft body tissues.

1. Bleach is corrosive


The reason that bleach is most frequently used -- making things white and bright again -- is also one of the biggest downfalls of using bleach and cleaning products containing bleach. Bleach can "bleach out" coloured fabrics, upholstery, carpet and even other types of flooring. Bleach can eat through finishes on wood floors, linoleum and certain cabinet finishes. Cleaners with bleach possess all of the corrosive properties of straight bleach. If cleaners with bleach whiten greying fabric and dingy surfaces, just think what those substances do to your skin. Bleach-based cleaners can burn flesh and irritate eyes and mucous passages.

2. Bleach is toxic


When bleach and cleaners containing bleach are mixed with ammonia-based products, ammonia, pool chemicals, oven and drain cleaners, and acidic-based products such as vinegar, toxic fumes and gases are produced. When an acid-based product, such as certain rust removing products or vinegar variations, mix with bleach, it will form chlorine gas. Chlorine gas at least is an irritant and at worst is fatal. When mixed with ammonia, bleach causes highly toxic chloramine gas. Ammonia isn't just found in cleaning products, it can be naturally occurring in urine, such as pet or baby urine. Never mix bleach with anything other than water.

3. Bleach is not suitable for cleaning!


Bleach-based cleaning products, as well as pure bleach, are disinfectants but bleach by itself is not a cleaner; it doesn't remove dirt. Bleach is a germ-killing solution. However, many bleach-based household cleaners incorporate cleaners so the consumer gets the properties of bleach combined with an effective cleanser. Household cleaners are labelled to indicate whether they are cleaners, disinfectants or both. Bleach-based cleaners kill viruses, such as influenza A and B, bacteria and fungi, such as athlete's foot.

Greener cleaning – the alternative

There may be no such thing as 'green' cleaning products – even plant and mineral-based formulations require water to neutralise their impact as well as energy for the manufacturing process and transport for their raw ingredients, potential fertiliser and pesticide use on the crops, plus competition between food and non-food uses of land. However, there are an increasing number of companies that are trying to produce or use cleaning products is a more responsible way. For virtually all of these companies, that means that they avoid petrochemicals and chemicals such as chlorine bleaches as well as phosphates and synthetic fragrances. One example of such companies is Cleaning Ventures (http://cleaningventures.co.uk), a Manchester-based commercial cleaning company who EMERGE is now working with to provide cleaning solutions for our commercial customers.  


Cleaning Ventures: A case study

The 5 main cleaning products the company uses were chosen because they are the first manufactured in the UK to be accredited with the UK Ecolabel. As an example, their glass and mirror cleaner contains vinegar and their toilet cleaner uses a formula based on organic fruit acids. Pete Bridge-Collyns, Managing Director of Cleaning Ventures, said: “At Cleaning Ventures we are very keen to work with our customers to help maximise their environmental compliance. We ensure a squeaky clean, fresh, professional work environment without unnecessary use of harsh chemicals. Non-bleach based solutions are perfectly capable of ensuring the highest levels of cleanliness and hygiene, a crucial factor regularly applied elbow grease! We are delighted to work with EMERGE to offer high quality cleaning solutions for customers who share our values."

Sources: 
http://www.ehow.co.uk/info_8194755_effects-household-cleaning-products-bleach.html 
http://www.theprofessionaljanitor.com/why-you-shouldnt-clean-with-bleach/ 
http://www.ethicalconsumer.org/ethicalreports/householdcleaningproductsreport/toxicchemicals.aspx

Smaller wheelie bin plan to get people to recycle more

Black wheelie bins could be slashed in size by a quarter in a town hall drive to boost recycling.

Environment chiefs want to gradually roll smaller general waste bins out across Manchester as they look to save cash and cut landfill. Blue and brown bins – for paper and glass – will more than double in size if the plans are agreed by councillors. But any household needing a new or replacement black wheelie bin would be given a 180-litre version instead of the current 240-litre size. In some parts of south Manchester an even smaller 140-litre bin is being considered.

The city currently recycles around 37pc of its rubbish – higher than some Greater Manchester authorities but nowhere near as much as council bosses would like. While neighbouring Salford – which uses the same large bins as Manchester – recycles less at around 30pc, Stockport, which has used 140-litre bins for several years, has one of the highest rates in the country at 63pc. Over the next two years, Manchester bosses want to cut costs by £540,000 by increasing recycling, which is cheaper to process than landfill.

As well as cutting the size of its bins, they are considering a ‘closed lid’ policy, meaning over-filled bins would not be collected. They are also reviewing a rule that gives families of six or more an extra bin. Meanwhile contractors are currently removing any ‘unauthorised’ black bins they find at properties in north and central Manchester, before moving onto the south in the next few weeks.

Manchester currently pays around £32m a year to dump household waste in landfill – a figure council bosses say is not sustainable. Coun Nigel Murphy, Manchester City Council’s executive member for the environment, insisted the new 180-litre bins would help. He added: “Although these black bins would still be larger than those used in some of our neighbouring authorities, they would encourage people to think more carefully about what they throw away as more than 70 per cent of items put into black bins can be recycled.”

Source: http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/smaller-wheelie-bin-plan-people-4029393

Co-op to recycle all waste from its UK food stores

Food retailer the Co-operative Group is set to divert all waste from its 2,800 UK food stores by the end of July. The firm had pledged to send more than 34,000 tonnes of store food waste per annum for recycling, reuse or energy production by the end of the year, but has now reached that target five months ahead of schedule through its recycling scheme.

The scheme, known as ‘Project Womble’, involves waste being segregated at store level, before collection and delivery to distribution depots. The retailer claims the scheme will also put an end to more than 225,000 skip collections from food stores every year and have its waste management costs.

According to the Co-operative, 64% of its 34,000 tonnes of annual food store waste is food and flowers, which will be sent for energy production through anaerobic digestion. A further 21% is general and customer waste and will be sent to a refuse derived fuel facility and energy recovery.

Meanwhile, dry mixed recycling such as empty milk bottles, tins, cans, office paper and till receipts – which makes up 15% – will be sent for sorting at materials recycling facilities. Cardboard and polythene at stores will continue to be baled and sent for recycling.

UK food waste charity FareShare is also working with the retailer to send surplus foods from distribution depots, such as oversupplies and products with damaged but intact packaging, to disadvantaged people in the community.

Source: http://www.letsrecycle.com/news/latest-news/waste-management/co-op-to-recycle-all-waste-from-its-uk-food-stores