IT is National Recycling week from June 18-24 and the Borough Council King’s Lynn & West Norfolk is working in partnership with the campaign which, this year, is themed ‘Plastic Fantastic’.
We’ve been using plastic bottles for 65 years and because of water, soft drinks, shampoo, bleach, olive oil and everything in between, we get through a staggering 15 million of them every day in the UK alone.
The humble plastic bottle has never been so much in demand, and now, thanks to the upcoming summer of sport and celebration, demand is set to soar even further.
It’s not just the prospect of street parties, barbecues and associated merriment, there’s the small matter of the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics Games; spectating will be thirsty work for the nine million ticket-holders and estimated 38 million TV viewers over the 30 days of competition. We will also have the Olympic Torch on our doorstep, as it comes through King’s Lynn and surrounding areas in July.
In short, 2012 is set to be a bumper year for plastic bottles. Sadly, currently less than 50 per cent of them are making it to the recycling bin and National Recycling Week wants to turn it into a bumper year for collecting them.
The annual recycling push reminds us all of the value of recycling and just how easily we can do it. For 2012, the campaign wants us to think twice before putting our plastic bottles into the rubbish bag – because now, thanks to technology, it’s possible to recycle ALL shapes and sizes of bottle including milk, shampoo, bleach, shower gel, and even plastic bottles used outside in the garden or kept in the shed.
So what happens to bottles during recycling? They’re first separated by colour, cleaned, melted down and then turned into plastic pellets. These are used to make fences, bags, flooring, window frames, fleeces, fibre fillings or even more bottles!
While we are thinking about ‘Plastic Fantastic,’ we must make sure that we put our recyclable items into the bin loose. When we put any of our recycling into carrier bags, it means that waste can’t get sorted, so immediately gets sent to landfill – not so fantastic. We also need to remember that we cannot collect hard plastic like yoghurt pots and margarine tubs from your home. These contaminates should not go into our recycle bins.
For more information on recycling with the borough council visit www.west-norfolk.gov.uk/refuseandrecycling