One of the fastest growing global industries is waste management. This billion-pound industry, which has grown rapidly over the previous few years despite continued economic uncertainty, provides employment for more than 120,000 people in the UK alone.
The UK government’s drive to divert as much material as possible from landfill sites, coupled by an ever-increasing public awareness of environmental issues, has helped to encourage growth and push the waste management industry forward. This sector is now a crucial part of the economic landscape within the UK.
In the future, as economic conditions improve and consumer spending gradually increases, the waste management industry, which covers the collection, treatment and disposal of all waste materials, should continue to grow and develop. Who would have thought that in 2014 so many people would be generating an income from waste!
Forecasts made by DEFRA (The Department for Environment, Food, & Rural Affairs) anticipate an annual growth of approximately 3.5% over the next two years.
Standing Out From The Crowd
Businesses that are already demonstrating their commitment to a green waste management strategy are more likely to secure contracts than others. Standards and expectations across Europe are high and companies with greener policies are frequently favoured.
With such a broad spectrum of different types of waste being produced, there are endless possibilities for new businesses that are able to come up with and develop new ideas and ways to recover valuable resources from waste materials. Businesses are continually seeking new and more efficient ways to collect, transport, process and reuse waste materials.
The growing number of businesses that are adopting efficient methods to make sure that all of their resources are used in a sustainable and efficient way are leading the way, by demonstrating that it is possible to improve their bottom line by treating waste as a valuable resource and putting it back to work! Other businesses are following suit as they too realise that by implementing basic changes they too can take advantage of the financial benefits of operating in a more responsible and sustainable way.
As societal pressure to reduce waste and recycle waste material more efficiently increases, it appears certain that the growth of this industry is set to continue. New technologies are emerging, as the pressure to meet environmental targets increases. Some of the ideas that have been developed are entirely new innovations whilst others have taken elements of the older technologies and applied them in new ways.
There are just a handful of materials that cannot be recycled, but some materials cost so much to recycle that for now it is simply not economically viable to recycle them. Environmental issues are a key consideration but businesses must always strike a balance between the environment and the cost involved with their waste management strategy.
The investment and energy being put into research in this sector is sure to uncover new, innovative, cost effective and creative solutions to help us with the way we manage our waste. This is one industry that will not disappear due to a shortage of resources…