15th November 2019
When it comes to the way the waste and recycling industry works, compliance is a key element which underpins everything operators, suppliers, transporters, processors and distributors do.
Here at Clearpoint, compliance comes first and it’s embedded in our culture. We’re committed to sourcing and selling high-quality recyclable commodities – plastic, paper and metal – while always meeting the high compliance standards which govern the industry. In fact, we strive to exceed expectations in this respect!
But that’s nothing new. Despite there being an increased focus on waste disposal and end destinations in the media recently, we’ve always had peace of mind that we’re not contributing to the shocking scenes of illegal waste dumping which you see in the news. Far from it!
Unfortunately, ever since China’s plastic waste import ban in 2017, there’s been lots in the media about other South-East Asian countries – Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia – suffering from plastic waste pollution. In Indonesia, for example, the burning of this contaminated material is even reported to be having poisonous effects on the country’s food chain.
Hearing stories such as this one is extremely concerning to the Clearpoint team, because we really care about what we do. We provide a fully transparent cradle-to-grave audit trail – direct to end-users – for every kilo of materials we export, without exception, and is something we pride ourselves on.
What compliance measures do we put in place?
We have a dedicated compliance team which completes a comprehensive due diligence when it comes to where the materials are sourced and where they go. We won’t “rubber stamp” customers until we are confident all site licences and permits are present, and all accreditations are valid, as well as understanding the facility’s handling processes.
If the material is heading to an interim site before reaching its end destination, we ensure all the necessary checks are carried out for each place the commodities are transported to.
What makes our approach so seamless though is the cohesion of our teams. The compliance and sales departments work very closely. For instance, sales will source buyers, but they will never book a load until our compliance specialists have done their inspections.
This due diligence and comprehensive evidence audit of all our listed end destination sites – showing they are credible and legislatively sound – is what gives us a clean conscience that our approach really works.
In the past, some waste distributors have been very blasé about adhering to waste regulations, simply because they were focused on the ‘making money’ side of things. For us, however, it’s always about trust and compliance over margin.
What is the compliance landscape looking like in 2020?
While there hasn’t been a significant change in waste export legislation over the last twelve months, there has been a huge shift in the amount of media attention the sector has received.
With David Attenborough’s Blue Planet bringing plastic waste to the forefront of everyone’s minds – a topic reinforced by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s BBC documentary in Malaysia – there has been lots of pressure on the Government to take action. And this is a trend which will definitely continue.
Regarding what’s next for the industry, at the moment, we have certain grades of recyclable materials – specifically green list and non-hazardous – which move across borders by road, rail, air and sea under the Transfrontier Shipment of Waste (TFS) regulations.
However, it’s likely that as time goes on, more material will move under notification, meaning the entire transportation process – including the tonnage of waste, the haulier used, the port it leaves from and the exact route to destination – will have to be completely mapped out and the Environment Agency pre-notified. This is a change which, as an ethical Environment Agency approved exporter, would be a welcomed one.
To find out more about our services, please feel free to contact our friendly team!
Logistics is always a challenge when moving recyclables from the UK to the continent, Clearpoint’s logistics team operate a slick and effective system, they are helpful and efficient when arranging sophisticated deliveries into multiple European Paper mills.
Dutch Paper Customer
We have been supplying Clearpoint Recycling on a regular basis since 2014. Clearpoint have been awarded several working contracts, due to their professionalism and competitive pricing, and we have confidence that they are consistent in their level of service.
Welsh Material Supplier
We have been buying from ClearPoint Recycling for 3 years now and our experience first hand is that they are a friendly and professional business. The material sourced by ClearPoint comes from a trusted supplier network ensuring quality and tonnage meets our requirements.
Dutch Paper Customer
Their level of service is fantastic, they are always at the end of the phone if needs be, and their logistics department keep us informed at each stage. They are quick to respond to any unforeseen challenges and have a pragmatic approach when finding solutions.
Welsh Material Supplier