The latest report produced by Recoup and sponsored by Nampak Plastics and Wellman Recycling was launched at the BPF recycling seminar in Stoke today. It shows another encouraging increase in the bottle recycling rate with 48.5% of UK plastic bottles now being collected for recycling.
The data shows a 2.5% increase in comparison with the previous report, with over 281,000 tonnes of plastic bottles collected for recycling in 2010. But the real headline is the level of non bottle plastics collected for recycling from kerbside, which has more than doubled to 76,300 tonnes.
With 21.7 million UK households now receiving a plastic bottle kerbside collection, this is testament to ten years of progress. Bottle collection rates have jumped from 3% to 48.5% during that time, the number of bring collection points has more than trebled, and non bottle plastic collections have evolved from effectively nothing to 76,300 tonnes.
Stuart Foster, Deputy CEO at Recoup said that ‘it is really exciting to be able to follow plastic packaging collection scheme progress over the years. The report would not be possible without the responses received from individual local authorities, so thank you to all who participated.’
However, the data should ring some alarm bells for policy makers as well as those organisations across the plastic supply, collection and recycling chain. The Recoup survey data suggests that bottle collection rates over the next five years will struggle to meet the burgeoning demand for material, while the non bottle collection rates will increase significantly, requiring urgent investment in sorting infrastructure, and further development of sustainable and auditable end markets for this fraction.
The full report due for release in early November will be a ‘one stop’ resource to inform stakeholders, including local authorities, waste management companies and reprocessors, on current plastic packaging collection trends and practices. When released, the full report will be available FREE from the Recoup website at: www.recoup.org