County gets high marks for recycling

SUFFOLK is one of the highest performing counties in the country for recycling and composting, it emerged today.

SUFFOLK is one of the highest performing counties in the country for recycling and composting, it emerged today.

County chiefs say residents are playing their part when it comes to recycling plastics in Suffolk and are reporting an increase in the number of people wanting to be reassured that their waste, and in particular plastic, really is being recycled.

Suffolk is currently fourth in the national recycling and composting league table with a 42.9 per cent.

The county council manages the 18 Household Waste Recycling Centres in the county and out of these, 12 accept plastics for recycling. All of this plastic is currently shipped to China for recycling.

There is currently a gap in the amount of plastic collected for recycling in this country and available plants in the UK to recycle it, and so China currently bridges that gap, accounting for more than 80 per cent of the UK's recovered plastics exports.

A spokeswoman for Suffolk County Council said: “The county council has an audit trail to document what happens to plastic materials when collected for recycling from a waste centre to the final stages of the recycling process in China.

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“Suffolk complies with the requirements and so we are confident that the plastic sent to China is being recycled in the correct way.”

The plastic for recycling is sent across the world in containers which are then re-used to carry finished goods back to the west - otherwise they would be sent empty back to China.

For more information about waste recycling see the "local services" tab of www.suffolkrecycling.org.uk.

Almost 21pc of the recycling which goes to the recycling facility in Suffolk (from kerbside bins) is plastic that goes on to be recycled.

Between 2006/7 and 2007/8 Suffolk County Council composted 1,500 tonnes more green waste as a result of kerbside compost bins

In 2007/8 the council landfilled 11pc less waste than in 2006/7

In the last 4 months almost 1,000 home compost bins have been sold in Suffolk.