Facts About Recycling and Waste

We are committed to helping you reduce, reuse and recycle

Here are some fascinating facts about recycling and waste in the UK.

If you’re interested in finding out more about recycling, please follow us on Facebook for updates and tips about recycling more and wasting less. 

Did you know?

  • On average, each person in the UK throws away seven times their body weight in rubbish every year
  • We make 20 times more plastic today than we did in the 1950's.
  • Recycling just one plastic bottle can save the same amount of energy needed to power a 60watt lightbulb for 6 hours.
  • Globally, an estimated one million birds and 100,000 marine mammals and sea turtles die every year from entanglement in, or ingestion, of plastics.
  • About 20,000 tonnes of aluminium foil packaging (worth £8 million) is wasted each year. Only 3,000 tonnes is recycled (worth £1.2 million).
  • If we produce steel from recycled materials it saves 75% of the energy needed to make steel from original materials.
  • Every day 80 million food and drinks cans end up in landfill (being buried). That's one and a half cans per person (source: Waste Watch).
  • The UK uses over six billion glass bottles and jars each year. It would take you over three and a half thousand years to sing "Six Billion Green Bottles"! (source: Waste Watch).
  • Every year the average British family throws away 6 trees worth of paper (source: Waste Watch).
  • A banana skin can take up to two years to decompose if not disposed of properly (source: Eco Schools).
  • 900 million items of clothing are sent to landfill each year.