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UK reaches new plastics recycling milestone

United Kingdom – The UK managed to attain another milestone by recycling a total of 517 394 tonnes of plastics in 2011, concludes the latest annual survey from the British Plastics Federation (BPF). A little over 100 000 tonnes of the recycled plastics was exported, it is added.

A little over 100 000 tonnes of the recycled plastics was exported, it is added. ‘€˜2011 has been an important milestone for the BPF, with members recycling a total of 517 000 tonnes of plastics and breaking the half-million-tonne barrier for the first time,’€™ the organisation underlines.

But despite the promising results, BPF’€™s Chairman Roger Baynham notes: ‘€˜The increased packaging recycling targets set by the government are challenging and will only be achieved by creating a credible route map which must address the UK’€™s over-reliance on export markets for its plastics waste.’€™

In terms of the volumes of raw material received as input to the recycler, the construction and demolition sector came out on top with 314 106 tonnes (23%), with the end-of-life vehicles market a close second on 302 061 tonnes (22%). Meanwhile, post-consumer household packaging – most notably bottles – totalled 253 720 tonnes (18.5%), and waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) amounted to 130 739 tonnes (9.5%). 

According to the BPF, 25 of its 40 members submitted data for the survey, comprising 87% of the organisation’€™s total membership by turnover.

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