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Waste management

The effective management of waste is vital to businesses, both to ensure that resources are being used as efficiently as possible, and to comply with environmental law. It is no surprise that the principal cause of fines issued by the Environment Agency is for non-compliance with waste law.

All organisations will produce some form of waste or another. All will be regulated to a greater or lesser extent by waste law.

Resource efficiency

From a resource efficiency perspective, Workplace Law advises clients on the practical implementation of the waste hierarchy, with an emphasis on the first step – designing out waste at source.

  • Prevention should always be the first option in trying to improve resource efficiency, as not creating the waste in the first place delivers the most significant cost and environmental benefits.
  • Reusing materials such as off-cuts and packaging for other applications is far more efficient than throwing them away, or consuming additional raw materials to provide the same function.
  • Recycling enables products and materials that have not reached the end of their useful life to be reprocessed into new products, reducing the demand on natural resources.
  • Other recovery includes maximising the resources available from waste through measures such as incineration with energy recovery.
  • Disposal should always be the last resort, and only after all other options in the waste hierarchy have been assessed. Sending waste to landfill means there is no further opportunity for the material to provide a useful function.

Legal compliance 

While much of the activity around resource efficiency is voluntary, waste management is also underpinned by legislation. For example, specific regulations govern packaging waste, waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE), batteries, and vehicles – where the principle of producer responsibility applies. More generally, through both legal and fiscal measures, the ban on disposing certain wastes to landfill (a consequence of the Landfill Directive) has also driven change in resource management. The requirement to minimise waste through application of the waste hierarchy has recently been codified in the Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2011.

Workplace Law advises clients on all aspects of compliance with waste law.

We also help organisations fulfil their legal responsibility to manage waste. The Duty of Care (as set out in the Environmental Protection Act 1990) requires the holder of the waste, which can be the waste producer, carrier or disposer, to take all reasonable steps to ensure there is no unauthorised deposit, treatment, keeping or disposal. This includes ensuring it does not escape from your control, is only transferred to an authorised person, and that any transfer of waste is accompanied by a written description.

Waste law has a classification system that determines the properties of each waste stream by assessing how harmful the waste might be to humans and the environment. Our environmental practice helps clients identify waste streams, implement waste management operations, and comply with waste law.

Why choose Workplace Law? 

Workplace Law is a leading environmental consultancy with expertise in waste management, law and practice. Working closely with our clients and their partners in the supply chain, we have helped a number of organisations achieve significant cost savings through improving waste management practice, including one of London’s most prominent retail areas.

The practice is led by a qualified and experienced sustainability expert, with broad experience in the property, facilities management and construction sectors, having undertaken a number of high profile projects as a sustainability advisor and BREEAM assessor. We also have experience of working with organisations to help them reduce construction waste through the requirement for Site Waste Management Plans.

Through our multi-disciplinary practice we act for a number of clients as CDM Coordinators, and are able to integrate Site Waste Management Plans and environmental assessments into CDM compliance activity, helping to streamline workflow and reduce the cost of building projects.

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Benefits

Our expert environmental consultants will help you understand the impact of waste on your organisation, in particular:

  • the waste streams you produce and how to manage them;
  • what waste is costing you, and what you can do to minimise it, and the likely investment involved; and
  • your potential exposure as a result of non compliance with waste law, so that you can quantify the risks and take remedial action.

We work with clients to help you reduce cost, manage risk and improve efficiency.

Case studies

Kuehne + Nagel: Managing environmental risk

Workplace Law is delivering the training of Kuehne + Nagel environmental champions staff through a year-long programme –delivering the four-day IEMA Foundation Certificate in Environmental Management in a combination of elearning, in-house courses and as part of public courses at the Workplace Law Executive Centre.

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BNP Paribas Sustainability Estates Training Package

In 2012 Workplace Law was asked to develop and deliver a property management-focused sustainability training course for BNP Paribas Real Estate UK. This is a branch of BNP Paribas bank, which provides a number of property services including development, management and investment of property portfolios across the UK.

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Assisting Shelter: Implementing ISO 14001

Workplace Law was appointed in the final quarter of 2012 to assist Shelter with the implementation of an ISO 14001 Environmental Management System (EMS). Shelter wished to reduce its environmental impact, secure funding and make operational cost savings.

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Helping Chaps Ltd get CHAS accredited

"In 2009 Chaps Ltd recognised that it needed to improve its health and safety systems. We changed our Health and Safety consultants to Workplace Law in order to give us a fresh approach towards our management of health and safety and to gain specialist construction advice.

"By using their expertise and experience Simon and Maria have guided us into developing a health and safety system that has achieved CHAS accreditation and given our customers and principle contractor’s confidence in our management of health and safety. They have always been available to offer advice when needed and to provide independent site inspections and audits which are often required by our customers.

"Both Simon and Maria continue to support Chaps Ltd and have become an important, integral part of our Health and Safety Management System."

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Testimonials

"When reviewing our need for Employment Law Support, a number of companies were shortlisted and Workplace Law were chosen due to the professionalism and advice they provided. Since engaging with them they have proved to be an excellent ‘sounding board’, guide and always at the end of an email or call to give practical, commercially sound advice. The support given for a ‘handed over’ tribunal was second to none and a positive outcome. I’d recommend Workplace Law to any business that was looking for comprehensive, professional and sound employment advice." Caroline Lupton, Anson
"Having the Workplace Law Annual Support Contract in place provides our business with essential on-going day to day HR support in dealing with the wide range of personnel issues we face and in supporting our managers. As well as being legally sound the advice is both pragmatic and commercially focussed with an excellent response rate provided to our enquiries. All the HR Consultants in the team are approachable, professional and extremely capable in helping us work through the many diverse challenges we face to ensure that people are treated lawfully and fairly. The support ranges from day to day email and telephone advice to excellent consultancy service for more complex issues. We hope to be able to continue with this partnership well into the future and would have no hesitation in recommending the HR support that Workplace Law are able to provide to other businesses." Gill Baglin, Brewers
"We were very pleased with the way Workplace Law carried out our fire risk assessments in the College and hostels. They worked very closely with us throughout the process and produced a comprehensive set of risk assessments that met our requirements perfectly." Bob Smith, Magdalene College
"The proactive stance taken by Workplace Law CDM-C’s on our projects has created a positive attitude to problem solving between the design, delivery and client teams. In many cases our clients are introduced to the CDM regulations for the first time as ‘lay clients’ and need a high degree of hand holding to stay with the spirit and letter of the law. This could lead to costly delays in the works. This has proved not to be the case and all our key objectives are met." Mark Myers, The Harmsen Group
"On the whole I have attended many courses and undertaken a variety of qualifications over the years and this course has been by far the most valuable to me in terms of the knowledge, confidence and enhancement to my working capability and therefore fantastic value for money. I would have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending this course to anyone looking to develop their operational HR skills or for managers having to deal with front line people matters." Jennifer Caswell, Great Yarmouth Port Company
"I really want to thank Workplace Law for the fantastic work you have done on our highly complex project. I know it was not easy to gather all the sensitive information from so many people. Myself and the MD have read the report and are both delighted with the clear and easy to understand way the whole report is laid out. The recommendations were spot on and it certainly helped clarify the issues. I am sure we will be calling on your services again." Thank you. Karen Todd, ACS International Schools

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