07 June 2016

Attempt to go plastic-free - update

Our Council won't recycle any plastics other than those which are bottle-shaped.  So, even if a yoghurt pot or a food tray is the same type of plastic as a milk bottle, they won't take it.  I decided to try to avoid buying food wrapped in plastic, but it turned out to be much harder than I had thought.

So many things come wrapped in plastic, probably because it's easier to stack and display, and even my attempts to buy as much as possible at the local market were thwarted by those horrible black polystyrene trays.  Since then, a new butcher has opened up on the market, and he sells meat loose in thin plastic bags, rather than using trays, so he's getting my business now,

In just one month, I gathered one black bin bag full of plastic food trays, yoghurt pots and other plastics which our Council won't recycle.  Eventually, my other half dropped a huge hint by leaving my bag of recycling right in the middle of the kitchen floor.  In the interest of peace, I decided it was time to dispose of it.

Knowing that one of the recycling centres nearby had a specific skip for these types of plastics, I set off to get rid of the bag.  However, the traffic was so bad that I diverted to the tip nearer to work instead.  When I got there, I couldn't find a receptacle for plastics, so I asked one of the site workers, who told me that they don't have one, and that I should throw it in the general waste skip.  I asked him why this was, and he said that few places will buy recycled plastic at the moment because 'new' plastic is cheap enough, so it is all sent to the Thermal Recovery Facility, where it is burnt in order to generate electricity.  The man also told me that the other site no longer recycles plastics either.

OK, so it's not recycling, but at least it's better than going into landfill.  I still think it's stupid that they won't recycle any plastics which are not bottle-shaped.  Other Councils manage it, so why can't we?

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