8th February 2023

Why is mattress recycling so important for the planet?

By TFRG Team

The bulky waste problem

8.5 million mattresses are sent to landfill each year amounting to 300,000 tonnes of bulky waste taking up limited space in refuse centres nationwide. This waste is not only a big problem for mattress retailers, who stand to lose billions of pounds a year to high waste disposal costs, but there is also a long-lasting impact on the environment.

Fly-tipping has also reached epidemic proportions in England, with 1.13million incidents recorded across 85 of England’s major towns and cities in the last year, a 16% increase on the previous 12 months. Mattresses, which are often seen as difficult and expensive to dispose of, make up much of the problem – around seven per cent of all illegal waste dumped in the last year across the UK. Fly tipping poses serious harm to the environment, plants and wildlife due to a range of materials which can be either hazardous or unable to biodegrade.

Without a sustainable solution in place the bulky waste problem is set to grow significantly, increasing fly-tipping nationwide and filling up the UK’s landfill sites while creating further damage to the environment.

Toxic landfill

Landfill sites contribute to the climate change issue, generating and releasing biogas into the atmosphere. Biogas is a mixture formed primarily of methane gas and carbon dioxide, two of the gases that cause climate change and increase the planet’s temperature. Research has found that if the current situation continues and we do not take action, landfill sites will account for 10% of greenhouse gas emissions by 2025.

Landfill sites can also release harmful toxins into the soil and water, contaminating it and affecting plants and animals in the local area with materials such as lead and mercury.

An estimated 45.4 million tonnes of waste is dumped at UK landfills each year, and with only enough space for 175.1 million tonnes of waste left in total, the landfill capacity is fast running out.

With the bulky waste issue increasing nationwide and toxic landfill sites nearly full, a sustainable solution is urgently needed to tackle the problem head on.

A sustainable solution

While mattresses continue to be a bulky waste problem, there is a sustainable solution championing circular economy principles across the UK.

TFRG is a circular economy specialist that provides sustainability solutions; recycling and refurbishing mattresses for organisations across the country. We divert 100% of mattresses away from landfill through recycling or reuse, using circular economy principles to ensure no materials are wasted.

With four facilities across the UK, a dedicated team of trained professionals and decades of industry knowledge, we tackle the bulky waste problem, supporting businesses and limiting the impact on the environment.

Over 3 million mattresses have been diverted to landfill using this method, a figure that’s increasing on a daily basis as TFRG works with some of the UK’s biggest brands, businesses and local authorities, including Simba and John Lewis.

Discover how our recycling service is helping a range of businesses and brands to divert their waste away from landfill. Get in touch today. 

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