Monthly Archives: February 2017

Why Waste Is Becoming Such a Big Problem Worldwide

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When it comes to waste, the old saying “out of sight, out of mind” is sadly valid for many people. Rubbish and all unwanted or leftover materials and substances have a seriously negative impact on the world around us. Here are just some of the main reasons why waste is becoming such a big problem worldwide.

Contaminating Soils and Groundwater

Most waste ends up in landfills, and they all eventually leak, no matter how “state of the art” they are. This means all the harmful chemicals in the refuse end up in the soil, contaminating it and the groundwater, which eventually leads to harming plants and all living beings, including humans. Once contaminated, polluted soil is almost impossible to clean with the only solution being digging it up to clean the area.

Contaminating Surface Waters

The chemicals in our waste don’t just leak into the soil. They can also reach the surface of nearby waters, ruining habitats and harming all creatures that drink from those water sources. Further contamination is caused by tons of rubbish, either blown by the wind, human carelessness, fallen from ships or spread around by extreme phenomena such as tsunamis. In the Pacific Ocean, for instance, there’s a huge accumulation of trash, plastics and debris in the middle of the water, spanning hundreds of miles. It is called the Pacific Garbage Patch and it’s not the only such disaster – there are many other such, though less notorious, patches across our oceans.

All that plastic and garbage is often ingested by fish, birds and other marine animals, causing irreparable harm or even death. This also harms other animals higher up the food chain because of all the chemicals in or released by the waste. If they don’t die or get seriously ill ingesting waste, many animals, from seals to other mammals, drown entangled in the rubbish or abandoned fishing nets found in the water.

Air Pollution

Waste also releases dangerous chemicals and gasses into the air, especially in open-air dumps and through incineration. The air pollution near these areas not only reduces the quality of life because of the foul odours and harms the health of the people living nearby, but it also endangers future generations. Studies show that, in communities located close to landfills and garbage incinerators, considerably more children are born with birth defects.

It is clear that something must be done to handle waste more effectively, considering rubbish dumps, landfills and incineration are not only harmful, but also incredibly costly. Recycling has yet to become financially viable, and therefore waste minimisation and education towards adopting less wasteful practices are the first highly important steps to be taken.27

Skips and where you can put them

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The disposal of waste is always a difficult part of any job. A good solution is to rent a skip from a hire company. They will deliver the skip to wherever you want and then also dispose of the waste, making your life a lot easier.

When booking a skip it is best to give the hire company as much information as possible. Make sure you inform them of exactly the kind of waste you will put in it as there are different skips available for the various types of waste. This will also affect the price. Specific skips can be supplied for general waste as well as metal, wood, rubble, soil, cardboard and so on.

Before you make a booking be sure of exactly where you want it delivered. Once the skip is dropped any further movement will cost extra and could get expensive. Consider the space needed for the delivery truck to drop the skip. They are usually delivered by a special type of light goods vehicle (LGV). Most vehicles are approximately 9 feet wide, about 22 feet long and weigh around 15 to 20 tons. It is best to measure and check the area where the truck will be operating, especially in confined areas or if there are small bridges nearby.

Be sure to check the placement of the skip allows you good access to it. Moving waste from your work site to the skip can be a difficult task so don’t make it any harder for yourself!

Prior to the delivery of the skip, check if cones or lights are required in the work area. If the skip is located on a public highway it will be your responsibility to make sure that cones or lights mark the skip clearly to the public. Some hire companies can arrange this on request.

Be careful of what you are putting in the skip. Hazardous or harmful waste is not allowed in skips on the grounds of health and safety. The hire company will be able to provide a full list of prohibited waste.

Finally, keep an eye on overloading. A heavy skip is dangerous to handle and drivers reserve the right to not lift if they consider it hazardous. As a general rule of thumb do not overload above the height of the skip sides.