The UK’s largest manufacturer of Screenline integral blinds will recycle more post-consumer glass and support more local good causes than ever, following the installation of new, automated machinery to process the waste glass collected from Uni-Blinds installers. The new plant, commissioned by Morley Glass at its headquarters and factory near Leeds, replaces its pioneering ‘Crush’ machinery, which has been retired after two reliable years of service.
The new machine is designed to be smarter and more productive through automation, extracting a larger amount of annealed glass out of the frame. This eliminates some of the more time-consuming and labour-intensive stages of the glass recycling process, to enable larger volumes to be handled. Through a process of separation and crushing, the glass is turned into cullet, which can then go straight into the manufacture of new glass, while spacer bars and any other materials are channelled off into a separate waste stream.
This first-stage recycling process is a joint initiative between Morley Glass and Saint-Gobain Glass, whereby recycled glass cullet is collected in half tonne bags for use as a raw material in the production of new glass. Since the initiative started in 2019, more than 670 tonnes of glass cullet have been produced which has saved more than 0.5m tonnes of ‘virgin’ sand from Saint-Gobain Glass’s manufacturing process.
The benefits of recycling post-consumer glass in this way go far beyond saving our sand reserves, the business argues. Using waste glass in place of virgin raw materials also reduces the amount of energy needed in production, which means that 199,000 tonnes of CO2 has been saved already – that is the equivalent of 332 ‘energy years’ for an average UK household.
Morley Glass goes even further, however, to make sure the value of the recycled glass cullet can be used to fund environment initiatives across West Yorkshire, through its GreenVision Fund. This enables local organisations involved in environmental improvement and green micro initiatives to benefit from individual grants of £500, to support their work.
Ian Short, Morley Glass’ managing director, said: “We’re thrilled that we can now handle three times the amount of recycled glass that we could previously, helping the industry take another important step forward in terms of sustainability. But equally important will be our increased ability to support more green initiatives than ever, as the size of our GreenVision Fund grows with recycling volumes. It’s a win win.”
By providing a post-consumer glass recycling service, Morley Glass helps its customers reduce the amount of waste they need to dispose of and improve the whole-life sustainability of Uni-Blinds integral blinds. It also assists Saint-Gobain Glass with their sustainability goals as they seek to increase the amount of recycled content in new float glass, which is already at the forefront of the industry. To find out more about the sustainability initiatives of Morley Glass, visit morleyglass.co.uk.