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TH Removals

Garden Fires

Garden Fires

What can I burn and when?

During lockdown it is reported that garden fires have increased as more people have been at home and have used them as an alternative to removing excess waste. Whilst we would never encourage the burning of waste at your property, we thought it important to let you know the rules on garden fires and discuss other methods of waste removal. 

As always, we are here to help with your waste removal needs in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

What can I burn on a garden fire?

Garden fires can be used to burn excess garden waste such as tree clippings or branches. However, they cannot be used to get rid of domestic waste that may pollute the environment or cause harm to human health. This is an offence under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 and therefore means you cannot burn types of waste that could cause this to happen. 

What time of day can I light a garden fire?

There is no specific legal time of day to light a fire. However, lighting a fire can be considered a nuisance to neighbours particularly if they are lit regularly. If a person’s fire means someone cannot enjoy their property due to smoke or ash in their garden as an example, then it could result in an ‘abatement notice’ being served. If this is ignored, then a fine of up to £5000 could be issued. 

Can I light a fire anywhere in my garden?

When lighting a fire then safety is the most important aspect. You need to be sure you have the right equipment such as a burning bin or other way of containing the fire. Whilst lockdown fires were common, they were also discouraged due to the strain on emergency services when they got out of hand due to people not taking appropriate care and attention. 

If you live near a road, it is worth noting that under section 161A of the Highways Act 1980 you cannot allow smoke or fire to drift over a road. This can incur a fine if there is a danger to traffic or it leads to any injuries. Consideration should be shown if a neighbour has washing out or are out enjoying their garden to avoid becoming a nuisance.

For help with waste removal in Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire contact TH Removals

Environment Bill On Household Waste Collections For 2023

The latest Government plans for nationalising bin collections has left councils wondering how it will impact household waste collections from 2023. 

The plans mean that councils will be ordered to collect food waste, glass and recyclable waste on a weekly basis by 2023. The result could mean that regular collection of is delayed in order to keep up with the Government schedule. 

Across the UK only 67 councils have kept weekly collections with the vast majority of the 341 local authorities changing to waste collections every fortnight. There are warnings that the Environment Bill plans which were revealed in the recent Queen’s Speech will make monthly collections more likely. 

Shadow Environment Secretary Luke Pollard has stated: “People just want their bins collected on time. This has nothing to do with recycling, it’s because Conservative governments have spent the past 11 years cutting council budgets to the bone.”

There is already disparity in areas across the UK. For example wheelie bins work well in urban areas but in rural areas kerbside collections are more difficult.

Progress on recycling waste has plateaued since 2015, even though around 45% of household waste was recycled last year. 

The Bill also included the right for householders to have free garden waste collections which would cost £100 million annually, regardless of whether a person lives in a flat with no garden. 

Residents will also have the right to free garden waste collections costing £100million a year – even those who live in blocks of flats without gardens.

Cllr David Renard, of the Local Government Association, said: “Councils know their local areas best and should decide locally how recycling and household waste is collected. Any new requirements must also be fully funded.”

Environment Secretary George Eustice said he would aim for fortnightly collections of household waste.

He added: “Our proposals will boost recycling rates and ensure less rubbish is condemned to landfill.”

With the Government unclear as to how councils will be supported to deliver on the plans it is important to consider the place for private waste collections. 

Between now and when the plans become a reality we are here to support householders to dispose of excess waste responsibly and legally. 

Contact us for more information about waste collections in your area.

BBC Documentary Highlights The Need For Waste Reform

A recent BBC Panorama investigation has highlighted the issue of fly-tipping and how it has become even more prevalent in lockdown. The documentary broadcast recently has shown how the licensing system has failed to stop fly tipping and how it is an ongoing and growing issue. 

Any business that transports or disposes of waste in England must have a license to do so held with the Environment Agency. The programme looked at the lack of checks on licensed companies and how firms can still be found to dump rubbish despite having a license in place. 

The Government has indicated that a reform of the licensing system is underway and that councils will be given more powers to tackle the issue of fly tipping. 

Lockdown has highlighted the need to address the issue of fly tipping as it has been seen to increase in fly-tipping incidents and is even now considered more acceptable as during lockdown periods there has been limitations on household waste collections and non-essential shops have been closed. In addition, with more time on their hands people have had more waste to dispose of due to clearing out additional rubbish from their homes. 

Based on the most recent Government figures, in England alone, there was over a million fly tipping incidents in 2019. To get a license anyone can complete the online form and pay a fee. Stricter checks have been called from by MPs who regularly receive complaints from constituents regarding the rise of fly tipping incidents in their areas. A specialist group was set up last year to try and tackle criminal gangs that dispose of waste on a massive scale, however there are significant calls for more action to reform the licensing system further. 

A Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs spokesman said of the changes afoot that the Environment Agency had been given more funding and powers to act. 

“We will also reform the licensing system for waste carriers to ensure stricter background and competency checks which, in combination with mandatory electronic waste tracking, will increase compliance and make it harder for criminals to operate.”

TH Removals will always dispose of waste responsibly and in line with the conditions of our license. If you are struggling to find a reputable licensed waste carrier then in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

What to do with unwanted or broken electrical items ?

Right now, it can seem harder to get rid of waste than ever before – with closures; changes to opening hours or queuing systems in operation at household waste sites it can be difficult to know what to do for the best. 

Electrical waste can be particularly problematic as it can often be too bulky to store indefinitely or cannot be disposed on in recycling or household waste bins.

What is electronic waste? 

Electronic waste is essentially any electrical item that a person or company no longer requires. It is also known as WEEE (Waste Electrical Electronic Equipment). Some common examples of electronic waste are: mobile phones, PC’s or laptops, printers, tv’s, fridge/freezers, games consoles, toasters, kettles etc

53.6 million metric tonnes of e-waste was generated in 2019 worldwide so this problem is significant. 

Whether they are broken or not once a person no longer requires an item it becomes electronic waste. Often if an item does break it is cheaper to replace rather than repair which in turn increases the amount of electronic waste. Other ways the amount of WEEE is high is when people upgrade their mobile phones or tablets their previous device becomes obsolete.

Why is electronic waste a problem?

As electronic waste contains chemicals it can be hazardous – if it ends up in landfill for long periods of time it can get into the soil and waterways. These chemicals can be dangerous to the environment and to animals and humans.

What can I do with my electronic waste?

There are several options for people looking to dispose of their electronic items during lockdown. As professional waste removal experts we can help you with removal of any waste including electrical items in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire. There are some other options below:- Sell your items – even if your items aren’t working, they may still have some value so selling them on is a great way to make some extra cash and get rid of your unwanted electronics.- Recycle – if you can get to a household waste site then they will have a designated area for electronics disposal. You may also find in other locations recycling containers that you can throw smaller items into. – Donate to charity – this can be tricky right now as most charity collections have stopped, and shops are closed but may be an option in normal circumstances. – Exchange to retailer – when purchasing a new or replacement item many retailers offer to take old products. This means you could exchange your old item for a new one even if your old product is faulty. 

Tier 4 Waste Advice as Christmas Day Looms

Christmas is looking very different this year – not least due to last minute Covid-19 shaped curveballs announced by the Government at the weekend. 

Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire are now all in Tier 4 restrictions until further notice. This means that residents should be at home aside from work or education for the most part. Non-essential shops are again closed along with hairdressers, nail bars, indoor entertainment, gyms, dance studios etc.

People aren’t permitted to meet indoors and travel out of the area is restricted along with travel abroad. 

Whilst waste services from councils are expected to continue it is likely to cause some disruption especially at this time of year when collections are already stretched due to the Christmas period. 

Many councils have stated that their household waste sites will remain open however many are operating pre booked slots only, so it is advisable to check with your local council first before heading to the tip. 

Depending on when your regular household collection is your services may be disrupted over the Christmas period and your collection could be on a different day. Your council should have provided you with a list of any changes or you should be able to check their website for more details.

We would always recommend where possible trying to reduce the amount of waste by recycling or reducing waste. However, we do understand this isn’t always feasible. We remain operational so should you have any waste removal requirements please contact us. We are licensed waste carriers and will always provide exemplary service and can provide the relevant paperwork to householders for their waste. 

From everyone here at TH Removals we would like to wish you a very merry Christmas and all the best for 2021. We look forward to moving out of Tier 4 restrictions and if you require any waste removal assistance during these times or throughout Christmas please let us know and we will endeavour to help. We can always be contacted for a no obligation quote for our range of waste removal services. 

Landfill waste volume increases by 4% in 2019 in England

Data published by the Environment Agency has revealed that the volume of waste going to landfill in England has increased by 4% for 2019 figures. The figures have grown by 1.8 million tonnes to 45,859,000 tonnes and whilst volumes have remained relatively similar for several years this increase is the biggest since 2008.

The hike is particularly attributed to an increase in landfilled waste from the East of England and the South East. These areas sent 9,553,000 tonnes and 9,572,000 tonnesrespectively. 

Whilst this data seems to be moving in the wrong direction and is the highest of the decade, the overall volume of landfill waste has reduced a great deal since 2000 when 79,923,000 tonnes was sent to landfill. Volumes have decreased year on year before levelling out from 2010 onwards. 

In terms of space at landfill the figures show that capacity at sites is still under pressure. Between 2018 and 2019 there was a reduction of 40 million cubic metres (m3) leaving England with 365 million m3. 

Regionally the South East is shown to have larger landfill capacity than other areas at 64 million m3. This is broken down by 27 million m3 for inert waste and 24 million m3 non-hazardous waste. 

The pressure on landfill sites is a reminder to householders the importance of being responsible about their waste disposal. 

As always, we would encourage people to recycle or re-use as much of their waste as possible. If this isn’t possible then we would like to remind householders that they should always use the services of a registered waste removal company. This ensures that waste will be disposed of in a responsible manner and not fly tipped and it also means that the householder has got rid of their waste legally. They will receive a receipt from the company and will be able to see a copy of their Waste Carriers License too. 

At TH Removals we have years of experience in disposing of unwanted waste and of course we are fully registered to do so. For all your waste removal needs in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire then please get in touch.

Recycle Week Enlists Support from National Landmarks

Recycle Week which is set to run from 21st to 27th September is to enlist support from National Landmarks for the occasion. 

The London Eye will be lit up green during the week along with Blackpool Tower, Gateshead Millennium Bridge and Tower 42. 

Together-We Recycle is the slogan for the campaign and is a way of thanking the nation for continuing to recycle despite the challenges presented by lockdown and Coronavirus.

WRAP charity that organises the week has also said it hopes other notable buildings will join in and has asked that councils across the UK light up their building and town halls in green. 

This will be the 17th annual Recycle Week and the charity hopes it will be the best yet with the 2020 event being about thanking everyone from recycling and waste operatives to the general public for helping collect and recycle waste. The campaignis also designed to look to the future and encourage more people to recycle as much as possible. 

Recycle Week is the UKs largest recycling campaign and has taken place each year since 2004. Last year the event reached 16 million people across digital platforms with 91% of people saying they recycled more having seen the campaign.

For this year’s event local authorities, waste management companies and more can get involved by using #RecycleWeek on social media channels. 

The event is a week long reminder of the importance of recycling and the responsibility that lies with each and every one of us for effective waste management. 

As always, we’d like to remind all of our customers and clients that we are here to help for all your waste removal needs. We are a licensed waste removal specialist and we would be happy to discuss your requirements for domestic or commercial waste removal. 

We support Recycle Week and encourage where possible for items to be recycled or reused and we will also always dispose of waste legally and responsibly. Using TH Removals means having the confidence that your waste is being dealt with appropriately by waste removal professionals.  

Lockdown Waste Causes Chaos For Charity Shops

It is fair to say that the Covid-19 lockdown has caused the waste industry a fair few headaches over its duration so far. Over and above regular waste from households, local authorities have also been dealing with the increase in waste too. Charity shops are expecting to be inundated over the next few weeks as they re-open their doors. Many are operating donations by appointment only in order to cope with demand.
According to Wrap, the recycling and reuse body supported by the Government they predict that across the UK around 67 million items of clothing and 22 million pairs of shoes will be making their way out of people’s homes. 2 in 5 Brits have cleared out their wardrobes during lockdown and this means that approximately 184 million items are ready for donation.
A Wrap survey reports that just under half (49%) of survey respondents have said that they will give clothes to charity. However, 14% said they will get rid of clothing in their general household waste and in fact 1 in 3 have already disposed of textiles in this way rather than storing them at home.
Householders are urged by Director of Wrap Peter Maddox not to dump their donations outside charity shops or next to over-flowing donation bins. Charity shops and warehouses are about to receive countless amounts and with many reliant on volunteer workers it is important that they aren’t completely overwhelmed.
Just as with any other kind of household waste it is important for people to remember that they need to be responsible. Dumping outside a charity shop is a selfish act in these times and many charities are having to find extra funds for additional waste removal collections from such donations that have been ruined sat outside for months.
There are other options for people looking to remove items from their homes which includes private waste removal firms. Contact reputable and licensed companies that will be able to offer advice and their services when it comes to waste removal of clothing or any other kind of items.

Composting at Home in UK Lockdown

As we mentioned in our last blog waste services in many areas of the UK have changed or paused during the Covid 19 lockdown. In particular, garden waste collections have been stopped altogether in many areas. As a result, householders are looking for new ways to reduce their garden waste and waste in general – so we’ve decided to revisit a topic we’ve looked at before – home composting. 

Whilst composting may be on many people’s to do lists it may not be something they know how to start doing. Here are some simple tips to get you started.

1) Composting doesn’t need a great deal of investment to get going. You can create a heap or makeshift bin with some old pallets. However, if someone does invest in a bin it should be rain, sun and frost proof. Wood or recycled plastic can provide the best insulation and breathing potential but there are various alternatives out there. Positioning is also important so consider this too and look for a bare soil, sunny area – somewhere that is aired easily and enables drainage.

2) Naturally not everything can be composted and for any waste that can’t be recycled or composted then we’d recommend using a professional and licensed waste removal service like TH Removals. Putting items that can’t be composted in with compost will just hamper the whole process. Striking a balance between green waste like grass cuttings and brown waste such as egg boxes, junk mail and even toilet roll tubes is key. It is also important to introduce nitrogen rich items such as uncooked fruit and veg peelings and carbon rich ingredients like paper towels, paper etc. Cooked food, meat, fish and dairy products should not be composted as they can end up attracting rats and other vermin. 

3) The best quality compost will take anything from 9 to 18 months to reach maturity. Turning compost on a regular basis will help make the decomposition faster. This process aerates the soil keeping microbes within the heap working. Even during the final stages when compost can look mature it is best to leave it between 1 and 3 months to further mature to become usable.

For advice on licensed waste removal in Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire don’t hesitate to contact us. Stay safe.

Coronavirus To Blame For Huge Spike In Fly Tipping

Since our last post about waste removal in these trying times many councils have taken the decision to close their recycling centres and reduce waste collections in order to protect the public and staff. The vast majority of councils are prioritising the removal of household waste but for many, garden waste and recycling collections may have been altered or stopped altogether for the time being. 

For UK householders, they are now likely to have several weeks of waste building up at their homes which is a cause for concern and sadly many are choosing to fly tip or have the waste collected by illegal firms. In parts of the country according to the Countryside Alliance there has been a 300% rise in fly tipping. 

Contributing to the situation is the fact people are using lockdown to clear out the clutter in their homes or to organise their gardens – resulting in excess waste over and above what they would normally have.

Rural communities in particular are suffering the effects of fly tipping with countless rural spots, grass verges and laybys all being used to dump rubbish. Whilst householders may not be directly tipping waste, they are using illegal waste removal firms to take their rubbish away.

At T H Removals we are still working throughout this crisis and as a licensed waste carrier we would urge people to be responsible for their waste and how it is disposed of. Councils can and will prosecute individuals that they either catch or can trace to dumped rubbish at a later date. 

As a reminder any licensed waste carrier will be able to produce paperwork which outlines they are eligible to remove waste and dispose of legally. There are unfortunately many illegal firms that operate but without a license none of them should be hired to remove waste from properties. 

It should also be noted that garden fires are not encouraged at this time. They pose a risk to spreading out of control if not managed properly which would put extra strain on emergency services. 

Please contact us for waste removal quotes from homes or businesses at this time and beyond. Stay safe. 

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