Saturday, 20 February 2010

Domestic Waste Recycling

I have always have had worries about the viability of domestic waste recycling. Take, for a simple example, plastic bottles. These occupy large amounts of space, even when partially crushed but are low in  weight of recoverable plastic. To collect them necessitates a heavy vehicle frequently stopping & starting along miles of residential roads;  then, when full, transport to a depot and from there to a recycling plant for recovery of usable plastic. Is the carbon saved at the point that reclaimed plastic granules issue forth into a delivery lorry more than that expended by all the handling and transport involved?

Will the cost of this recovered plastic to the bottle-makers be less than that of new material; or are taxpayers subsidising recycling as a matter of Government policy in order to keep the raw materials in the ground and waste out of land-fill?

Presumably someone has done the sums.

1 comment:

  1. Plastic isn't making as much money as it used to - the market has changed - but every local authority has to reduce landfill or be penalised. The answer is to reduce the use of plastic packaging, but that message seems to be taking a long time to get across. If there was a way to penalise companies who use excessive plastic, that would help. There are alternatives. I still have doorstep milk deliveries in glass bottles. The sale of milk in plastic containers ought to be discouraged.

    My friend Sue Mackie MBE, a retired teacher from our village school, is the recycling queen -