Plastic waste survey shows ‘recycling doesn’t work’ | Virgin Pure

By Bob Fear

Plastic waste survey shows ‘recycling doesn’t work’ | Virgin Pure

The UK’s biggest ever survey of household plastic waste, ‘The Big Plastic Count’, has revealed how much plastic the average household throws away. The survey’s organisers say that recycling is not the solution.

We’re throwing away nearly 100 billion pieces of plastic a year, according to a Greenpeace survey. Nearly 100,000 UK households counted how much disposable plastic packaging they threw away during the course of a week. With the average household throwing 66 pieces of plastic away a week, Greenpeace said ‘recycling is hardly making a dent’, while survey co-organisers Everyday Plastic said ‘recycling doesn’t work, we all know it.’

Data shows that only 12% of the single-use plastic packaging from our homes gets sent for recycling. 46% is incinerated and 25% is dumped in landfill. 17% is shipped away to other countries for ‘processing’. 83% of our plastic waste comes from food and drink packaging.

Greenpeace and Everyday Plastic are now calling for the UK government to commit to eliminating disposable plastic, and banning all exportation of plastic waste. They’ve also suggested a deposit return scheme on drinks containers.

Daniel Webb, the founder of Everyday Plastic, said ‘These new figures lay bare the responsibility of the government, big brands and supermarkets to tackle this crisis, and they must rise to the challenge right now — there is no time to waste.’

Chris Thorne, Greenpeace UK’s plastics campaigner, said ‘Pretending we can sort this with recycling is just industry greenwash.’

DEFRA, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, responded by saying:

‘We are going further to tackle single use plastics through our landmark Environment Act.’ While the British Retail Consortium said ‘The ability to remove branded single-use plastic packaging is challenging but can be unlocked with partnerships and collaboration with producers and does not alter retailers' underlining drive to make quick and effective changes in reducing single-use plastics.’

Read more about the hidden truth behind recycling in our article here:


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