Thursday, 19 March 2009

UK Recycling Hits £1 Billion Value!


Hurrah! - some really positive news: according to recent figures published by Recycle Now the total value of UK waste recycled since 2003 has just passed the £1 billion mark. This is a phenomenal achievement and even though we still have a long way to go it's worth standing back to take stock.

According to the figures, since 2003 the UK has recycled the following:
  • 10.1 billion aluminium cans – Laid end-to-end, the cans would stretch to the moon three times.
  • 24.2 billion steel food cans – 21 times the amount of steel used in the construction of Wembley stadium.
  • 9.5 billion 75cl glass wine bottles – Saving 5.4 million tonnes of raw materials including silica sand, limestone, dolomite, soda ash and others.
  • 26.1 billion newspapers – equivalent to supplying all men and women in the UK over the age of 15 with one newspaper per day for over two years
  • 13.5 billion 500ml plastic bottles – Equivalent to world’s population recycling two plastic bottles each over the five year period.
  • 2.8 billion square metres of cotton fabric – Laid out flat would cover an area the size of London twice over.
Obviously this is very encouraging progress and hopefully we will see these figures continue to improve, Recycle Now's figures show on average a 30% increase year on year in total recycling rates. As more and more people switch onto recycling and waste minimisation who knows, the zero waste ideal might not be too far around the corner.

Onwards & upwards!


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