Why is it important for us to recycle?
Every year the UK generates around 30 million tonnes of household waste, of which 5.9 million tonnes is packaging.
These figures are shocking and are primarily a result of consumer lifestyles and a growing population, among other contributing factors. Busy lifestyles have generated a demand for convenience items creating a ‘throw away’ society.
We cannot continue to fill up landfill sites or burn rubbish and unwanted items. We need to ensure that we change our behaviour and become less wasteful, reuse and recycle more often. We also need to encourage and educate future generations so they develop good habits and can help pave the way to a waste free world.
What environmental impact does recycling have?
When we recycle the materials are reprocessed and then used to create new products. This process reduces the demand for natural resources which are collected via mining, quarrying, and logging. Extracting, refining, and processing raw materials requires a higher use of energy. Eliminating these processes, all of which contribute to air and water pollution, will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and will help tackle climate change.
National waste strategy
The government recognises that more needs to be done and is constantly progressing legislation to make sure businesses and consumers are reducing the amount rubbish produced. Government strategies contain information on how the UK can deal with all sorts of waste including packaging, plastics, electronics, batteries, and end of life vehicles.