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Feature: Colour co-ordination

The problem of colour imbalance in the UK does not appear to be improving. This year,
the UK will import more than 600,000 tonnes of green glass in the form of wine and beer bottles, but alternative markets for the recycled product will have to be found.

Valpak chief executive Steve Gough says: "We are in a strange situation in that in order to meet government recycling targets, we need consumers to recycle more plastics, metals and clear and amber glass. But at the same time we don't know what to do with the green glass mountains that are building up.

"The problem is that clear and amber glass can be reused by the UK glass industry. But because the UK is such a low-volume beer- and wine-producing nation, we cannot reuse all the green glass we are recycling, and it is not commercially viable to export it all back to the wine-producing nations."

Together with the Government and industry bodies, Valpak has undertaken a series of studies to try to find uses for recycled green glass, such as including it in construction aggregates, but supply is outstripping demand.

"While everyone is trying to find a solution, UK wine consumption is going up and the green glass mountains are growing higher," continues Gough.

"In 1999, DEFRA said the urgency of the situation may not have been appreciated, but while studies have been made into new uses for green glass, implementation has been slow. The situation is only getting worse and urgent action is required.

"We would also like to see importers encouraged to specify that a higher percentage of products should be supplied in clear bottles, such as those used in the new world."

Supporting role

New equipment from JCB is playing a significant part in one recycling company's investment programme

Materials recycling company Recresco
is celebrating its 25 years in business
with a major investment programme in specialist glass handling and support equipment.

Based in Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Nottingham, the company handles around 12% of recycled glass in the UK, and provides a commercial collection service to licensed premises to collect glass bottles.

A significant part of the company's commitment to new support equipment has been the purchase of two JCB 416 wheeled loading shovels.

Recresco director Eric Gent says: "These JCB machines will be an integral part of
a major investment project that includes the purchase
of many new items of cutting edge processing technology. Once the programme is completed, we need to know that we have a reliable, high-
performance loading solution to keep up with our own specialised high-speed equipment."

The JCB 416 wheeled loading shovel is designed to combine power with operator comfort. Four ram geometry is said to deliver high torque for versatile performance, while optional limited slip differentials on the front and rear increase traction in poor conditions.

Tourist trap

Bombarded with glass during the tourist season, Rhyl cleans up its act with the latest urban recycling banks

Denbighshire County Council has taken the first step towards its aim of becoming one of the highest recycling authorities in Wales with the delivery of the latest urban recycling banks in Rhyl.

The council hopes the move will help tackle the

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