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Confused About Recycling (Study)

By Tom Windsor
Published in Recycling
July 08, 2021
4 min read
Confused About Recycling (Study)

Key statistics from the study

So, what’s the purpose of cardboard packaging and why is it so good? Cardboard boxes have a huge number of benefits for the environment. For example, they are 100% recyclable. This means that after you are finished with your cardbox package, you can recycle it and it will turn into a new item of cardboard packaging. Cardboard packaging is also super sustainable and biodegradable . When buried in a landfill site, cardboard takes only 6 months to break down. Thats super fast considering many of us have meat in our fridges which take longer than 6 months to break down in drawers at home! Cardboard packaging is also lightweight compared to traditional plastics. This means that in transportation its cheaper and much better for the. The research was conducted by Green Alliance for its Beyond the Box Project. The project has created a set of recommendations concerning the recyclability and environmental impact of packaging. The UK’s leading retailers, including Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda, Waitrose and Morrisons have already signed up to its principles as have many leading brand owners who are using more packaging made from corrugated cardboard. All these parties will be publishing progress reports on how they are doing against the objectives laid out in the project. But first, let me introduce you to some of the most noteworthy findings in the report.The campaign has been set up in collaboration between the UKs leading delivery companies, ISPs, and waste management firms. They aim to raise £300 million for recycling industry projects over the next three years. For this to be realised, they need to get businesses across the UK on board. As well as offering free training and assistance to businesses who want to change their packaging, the project also wants to get other stakeholders involved.The aim of the campaign is to help people make informed decisions and encourage developers, designers and consumers to use more cardboard. Beyond the Box have conducted a study into the environmental credentials of packaging and have done something very interesting with the results.The UK is home to the highest volume of cardboard recycling in Europe. By supporting this initiative, businesses and consumers alike are helping make a difference to our environment from the moment they commit to use cardboard packaging.There a lot of reasons why cardboard is a good choice when it comes to packing your products. However, our recent study revealed some interesting statistics that may have you re-thinking the environmental cost of packaging.

Is there any good news?

A clear majority of the British public support efforts to encourage manufacturers to use less packaging, with just 9% of respondents saying they were against any such action. When it came to suggestions on how to achieve this aim, an even larger proportion of people (87%) are in favour of a ban on ‘non-essential’ wrapping. In fact, 83% back the proposal for manufacturers to pay for the collection and recycling of their products. This is a clear indication that the Government, as well as businesses, have got to do more to ensure we all feel able to make recycling part of our daily routine.However, it’s not all doom and gloom. The study does show that people are happy to recycle when given the opportunity. A minority will do so even if they have to make an effort. Almost two thirds of Brits will take recycling to work or use their employer’s recycling services. Of these, a quarter said some extra help would make them recycle more; whilst 24% would recycle more if products came with clearer labelling about what can be recycled and where.So, it does seem that most people are conscious of waste once they are told about the huge figures. The challenge therefore, is to find ways of engaging consumers in more sustainable actions. I myself for example use my reusable shopping bag every week and have installed a water butt at my house. These daily actions are much more likely to change peoples habits than the 70% recycling rate across the country.

What can we do to encourage more change?

Saying “I don’t know, but I can look it up” (after you find out its recyclable) are great words to live by. A few other ways you can do your bit? Are you heading out this weekend? Find a recycling shop on the way there or back. Can a friend do with some furniture? Why not donate it to someone who’s in need – and not only could you make their day, but your local charity could also be eligible for tax breaks! We could all spare a little time, energy and effort to recycle more. And its easy. All four of these strategies combined literally only take a few minutes out of anyone’s day!. What can we do to encourage more change? Honestly not a lot- if we want big changes, then it needs to come from big people. By this I mean the policy makers and business leaders. If you work for a company which offers recycling as part of their service, they are promoting a positive image about recycling, and by wasting that food you are diverting attention away from the positive image they are trying to promote. The more you think about it, the more meaningful every single piece of waste becomes.What can we do to encourage more change? It starts with encouraging your friends, family and neighbors to “do the right thing.” Share this article or tell others about how we can all help our environment a little more. Every positive eco-action is meaningful in the bigger picture and will go a long way to helping create positive change in our world!. Sorting your waste and recycling it – simple, right? Wrong. The stats show that the vast majority of us leave our plastic bags on the kitchen side, rather than putting it in the correct recyclable bin outside. A quick Google search will reveal to us that plastic bags can’t be recycled due to their size. So what are we doing wrong?. In other words, there are no shortage of people gathering our rubbish, but that doesnt mean each and every one of us should be so passive. A Skip Hire Network member wrote to me after reading this blog post, and said:.


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Tom Windsor

Tom Windsor

Lead Researcher

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