Just one third of plastic packaging is recycled, survey finds

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29th November 2016 16:30 - Chemicals

Just one third of plastic packaging is recycled, survey finds: According to new research, just one third of plastic packaging used in consumer products is recycled every year, with the remaining two thirds being sent to a landfill site or incinerated.ust one third of plastic packaging is recycled, survey finds

The Recoup UK Household Plastics Collection survey has revealed that in 2015, just 500,000 of the potential 1.5 million tonnes of recyclable plastic waste was recycled. This result indicates that plastic recycling is notably below the national average.

The problem has been attributed by some Recycling groups, to consumer confusion over which items could be recycled, paired with the distinct lack of local authority-provided recycling services.

The survey revealed that the public is the most likely to actively recycle plastic bottles, with consumers recycling 7.5 billion of the 13 billion plastic bottles (57 per cent) used in households annually. On the other hand, just 30 per cent of all plastic tubs, pots and trays were recycled.

The plastic items least likely to be recycled were plastic films products, which include rice and pasta bags, plastic carrier bags and the film on ready-meals. Of this category of plastic items, just 3 per cent were thought to be recycled last year. This has been attributed to the fact that only 80 local authorities in the United Kingdom provided a recycling service for plastic film products.

When recycled, plastic can be reused to produce a variety of other products, such as car bumpers, football shirts, building materials and sleeping bags.

In the last 10 years, there has been a notable decline in the amount of plastics that have been recycled across Europe. However, between 2006 and 2014, there was a 64 per cent rise in the recycling of plastic products and a decline of 38 per cent in landfill caused by plastic.

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