MITIE educates university on cutting clinical waste costs

Outsourcing firm MITIE and University College London (UCL) have pioneered a clinical waste management solution that has generated significant cost savings and carbon reductions.

By diverting autoclaved clinical waste from UCL’s 23 laboratories from high temperature incineration to energy-from-waste treatment, MITIE achieved savings of 18% in disposal cost per tonne and reduced CO2 emissions per tonne by 27%.

It is estimated that the NHS disposes of approximately 250,000 tonnes of clinical waste a year – 1,000 times the amount of clinical waste generated by UCL – costing the tax payer an estimated £90m a year.

In recognition of this, MITIE won an award for innovative practice in waste management and resource recovery at the 2011 Environmental Excellence Awards, hosted by the Chartered Institution of Waste Management (CIWM) last week.

MITIE’s waste and environmental managing director, Mike Taylor, said: “I believe that the replication of this innovative approach could generate significant emission reduction and cost savings for the NHS.”

UCL’s waste contract manager Paul Monk added that the approach taken “will encourage other universities to look at their laboratory waste and to do the same.”

Maxine Perella

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