Your Recycling Is Being Secretly Dumped
By Jason Groves
Hundreds of thousands of tons of material dutifully put out for recycling is being secretly dumped in landfill sites by councils in Britain. Shocking new figures reveal that while some householders face stiff fines for breaching recycling laws, many councils are simply dumping huge quantities of the paper, glass and plastic they collect.In some areas one item in every eight put out for recycling ends up being sent for landfill or incinerated.
Local authorities last night blamed residents for putting the wrong rubbish in the wrong bin or failing to clean the material they try to recycle. If recycling is “contaminated”, the bags are simply dumped anyway. Critics said the revelations made a mockery of Gordon Brown’s attempts to be seen as a green crusader with the recycling drive and his plans to phase out free plastic bags.
Shadow Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles said: “I think families across the country will be shocked to learn that the cans and bottles they dutifully put out for recycling are being secretly dumped. “Most people want to do their bit but this sort of thing undermines confidence. It also raises real questions about the Government’s Big Brother approach over fines and bin taxes.” The figures showed that 240,000 tons of material put out for recycling last year ended up being dumped or burned.
This is likely to be the tip of the iceberg as almost half of all councils did not release figures, including major authorities such as Birmingham, Bradford, Hull and Warwickshire. In Worcestershire, 14,509 tons were dumped – equivalent to more than one eighth of the 110,459 tons put out for recycling.