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It’s come to light that recycling can be worse for the environment if not done accurately, our reporter Sidney Stanford investigates.
Recent surveys show that even though a large majority of people are on board with recycling and try hard to help reduce their carbon footprints, a lack of proper knowledge is putting the environment at a disadvantage because if recycling is not separated or cleaned properly it is most likely going to be rejected and sent to a landfill site for incineration instead of being reused.
According to the Department for Environment, Food And Rural Affairs, the UK generates a hefty 22 million tonnes of waste each year yet only 44% is recycled correctly.
Lots of people tend to get confused when it comes to what can be recycled or not. The British Science Association conducted a study for 2,000 citizens in the United Kingdom which tested people and their understanding of recycling.
A lot of people’s flaws in recycling come from not what can and cannot be recycled. 24% of the people that were surveyed admitted to recycling disposable coffee cups although they cannot be reused due to the plastic lining. Other common mistakes that were brought to attention by the survey included not rinsing out shampoo bottles and not taking the plastic out of tissue boxes. Most people were oblivious to the fact that things such as aerosol cans, plastic liquid containers such as shampoo bottles as long as they are rinsed properly.
A representative for the Recycling Association said:” If in doubt throw it out as that is better than putting the wrong items in the recycling bin” whereas the head of Engagement at the BSA, Ivvet Modinou has blasted manufacturers “Manufacturers could provide clearer information on packaging and local councils should be actively working to improve guidance for local residents.