This past weekend, Rubbish Walks was proud to participate in Keep Britain Tidy’s Community Clear Up event, which encouraged communities around the country to take part in a nationwide spring clean. I will be writing a proper blog entry about this later, but I wanted to get some of the stats out there so our wonderful volunteers can see some of the stuff they were finding.
Overall, 26 bags of rubbish were collected from Donkey Field, Chippenham, which consisted of 12 bags of general waste and 14 bags of recycling. That recycling included:
- Glass bottles: 51
- Plastic bottles: 108
- Cans: 132
We have divided the recycling into the following categories:
- Soda: 25%
- Alcohol: 24%
- Unknown: 20%
- Energy Drinks: 15%
- Sports Drinks: 10%
- Fruit Juice: 3%
- Water: 2%
- Milk: 1%
A few brands of note:
As usual, Coke came out on top, being 39% of all soda containers found and 10% of the overall total of recycling. Other commonly littered soda brands found this weekend include Pepsi and Fanta.
Carlsberg was the most littered alcoholic drink, with 25% of all alcohol containers being one of its varieties.
Energy drink brands were fairly evenly spread in terms of popularity: Monster (19%), Red Bull (18%), EuroShopper and Rockstar (14%), and Emerge and KX (12%).
In sports drinks, however, there was one clear winner: Lucozade. 79% of the sports drinks found were one of its varieties, which is 8% of the total recycling.
We choose to focus on littered recycables because they represent a real waste in terms of lost opportunity: these are items that can re-enter the production stream and be re-used to make other products. This saves raw materials and helps cut down on final consumer cost. But littered items? No one benefits. My personal belief is that a “bottle bill” or deposit scheme would help cut down on such waste by disincentivising throwing such items out, while at the same time incentivising their collection. Recyclables typically consist of at least half of the litter found, so such a scheme has the potential to make a real difference.
What all of the recycling looks like in bags …
… and sorted.