RECOUP publishes results of plastics recycling survey

10th October 2017 | Recycling

A survey carried out by RECycling of Used Plastics Ltd (RECoup), a not-for-profit working to promote plastics recycling, has found that over half a million tonnes of plastics were collected in the UK in 2016. Household Plastics Collection Survey, launched at the RECOUP plastics recycling conference, has highlighted the need to invest in kerbside recycling collections infrastructure and communications.

The organisation said that the survey can report 512,475 tonnes of plastics were collected for recycling in 2016. This consisted of over 340,000 tonnes of plastic bottles and nearly 170,000 tonnes of plastic pots, tubs and trays.

Just five Local Authorities in the UK now do not provide a collection service that includes plastic bottles as part of their kerbside collection service and 76 % (298) of Local Authorities in the UK collects plastic pots, tubs and trays.

RECOUP said that although the collection data represents great progress over the last 20 years, it doesn’t tell the whole story. The increase in collection of plastic bottles from UK households represents an increase of less than 1% from the previous year.

New collection schemes are also slowing down, with only seven new kerbside schemes in 2016 report that they introduced the collection of plastic pots, tubs and trays.

The organisation added that the opportunities for increased collections of plastic packaging are clear. In the UK the RECOUP Survey reports a collection rate in 2016 for all types of plastic bottles of 58%, with a 32% rate for plastic pots, tubs and trays.

Local Authority and waste management providers should be applauded for their efforts, but Local Authority budgets continue to be squeezed. The RECOUP Survey found that from nearly 160 responses, 51% of Local Authorities in the UK received budget cuts for providing waste and recycling collections or delivery of communications to householders about waste and recycling.

This represents a significant change to the results when the same question was asked the previous year – when just 13% reported budget cuts.

More information available on the website below