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PPE and recycling: how to minimise your environmental impact

PPE and recycling: how to minimise your environmental impact

With a recent study from the Ocean Conservancy revealing that more than half of survey participants see PPE pollution in their communities daily, helping to reduce the effect that PPE use is having on the natural environment is becoming an issue under consideration for many organisations.

Sadly, it is not economically viable for many waste management companies to recycle PPE due to their various materials and the fact that they may have been used in a medical capacity, so millions of tons of PPE waste is ending up in landfill each year. Discarded single-use face masks can also be seen blighting our streets, green spaces and waterways.

With the government heaping even more pressure on businesses to be more environmentally friendly as they head towards their net-zero goal, the subject of PPE recycling is something of a headache for many. PPE is still very much part and parcel of the daily routines for many workers, with rising infection rates and virus transmission meaning that these precautions are still important to protect the vulnerable and the NHS.

However, there are a few practical steps that can be taken by businesses of all shapes and sizes to help reduce the environmental impact of PPE.


Go washable

In the case of face masks, reusable is the way to go if you want to significantly reduce your environmental impact in a very easy and pocket-friendly manner.

A symbol of the Covid-19 pandemic and perhaps one of the most disposed of single-use PPE items, reusable face masks offer the same, if not better, levels of protection against airborne particles. They can be washed several times at high temperatures meaning that the amount of single-use masks discarded is significantly reduced.

Our reusable anti-bacterial face masks are proven to kill 99.9% of known bacteria with an added anti-microbial finish and pure cotton feel for extra comfort. They are ideal for days in the office, retail workers and anyone seeking a more environmentally and cost-friendly alternative to disposable masks.


Trace the origins of your PPE

Reducing your environmental impact doesn’t start and end with its disposal either, with much of the PPE imported from overseas having a much higher carbon footprint than that manufactured closer to home.

Buying your PPE from British manufactures like Wearwell not only significantly reduces the miles travelled to reach your company, it also supports our economy and creates jobs for local workers while ensuring that your PPE provision is of the highest possible quality.


Find a specialist waste management company

Finally, if you are serious about recycling your PPE correctly, then there are a number of specialist waste management companies out there that will collect, disinfect and recycle your PPE correctly to reduce its environmental impact.

Although these services may not be cheap, they do help you to boost your green credentials and prove your commitment to environmentally friendly businesses practices, so it’s a small price to pay if your intentions are to do all that you can to be a greener business.

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