E.ON and Recycling Lives find a future for redundant meters
Energy company E.ON has joined leading commercial recycler and social welfare charity Recycling Lives to reuse or recycle up to 1.5 million old gas and electricity meters.
The contract, which initially runs for two years, will see Recycling Lives sorting old gas and electricity meters that will be removed from homes when they reach the end of their lives or are replaced by newer versions.
Any meters which cannot be reused are transferred to Recycling Lives’ state-of-the-art recycling centre in Preston, Lancs. They are sorted, stripped down, their batteries removed for recycling and the remaining recyclable materials such as metal and plastics shredded for resale and reuse.
Chris Lovatt, Supply Chain Director at E.ON, said: “It’s clear that we need to think seriously about how we dispose of old meters, especially as more than 26 million electricity meters are due to be replaced over the next decade as Smart Meters are rolled out across the UK.
“Dumping them in landfill or sending them to the Far East – as could have happened in the past – is simply not an option. One of our key objectives at E.ON is to deliver a cleaner and better, more sustainable supply chain.
“By working with Recycling Lives we’re not only finding other uses for the various metals and plastics, we’re helping to support a charity that’s making a real difference to people’s lives. This is a real example of a win-win scenario for E.ON, the communities we serve and the environment.”
Alongside its environmental and waste management work, Recycling Lives runs its own charity providing accommodation, training, work experience and, often, full-time employment to vulnerable and marginalised people.
The contract with E.ON will see Recycling Lives Residents placed on tailored training courses alongside E.ON staff, enabling them to identify the meters which can be reused and dismantle those which can’t into their component parts, ready for recycling.
Michael Crowe, Finance Director at Recycling Lives, said: "The fantastic achievement of winning this contract is a true testament to how the collective strengths of all departments within Recycling Lives can be brought together to deliver a superb service to a large multinational company that gives serious consideration to Corporate Social Responsibility.
“We’re really looking forward to working with E.ON. This new contract is a huge boost for us, and goes to show that we’re ready to take on big companies and big contracts.”