Hello there, eco-conscious crew. How are you?
In case you weren’t aware, it’s Recycle Week! What does that mean, exactly? I mean, we all recycle by now, don’t we? Ever since we all got fancy new bins years ago for our paper and other packaging?
Well, you’d be surprised. I mean, if we all recycled (properly, anyway) there’d be no need for an awareness day, would there?
The 20th – 26th September would just be dedicated to something else, like World Aubergine Week or Hop on One Leg Week (had to check if they exist, they don’t).
Why do we recycle?
Pretty simple, really. We recycle because we use an awful lot of the Earth’s resource to make new things, when we’ve already got an abundance of things to begin with.
Essentially, we recycle to turn old, used things into new things again. Everyone knows that, right? (right?).
We save energy making new things, and resources, and time. And less things end up in landfills.
It’s been going on for a while now, but maybe not as long as you think. In fact in the UK in the year 2000/2001, only 12% of our municipal waste was recycled, despite the fact that a lot of the materials in our bin could be reused. It was one of the worst recycling rates in Europe!
But thanks to the 2003 Household Waste Recycling Act, which meant that the government had to provide a recycling bin to every household by 2010, recycled household waste rates went up to 43% by 2016.
Why do we talk about it so much?
Because it’s still a huge, relatively simple way of helping to save the planet. All it takes is a little extra thought before throwing things in the bin.
"It takes less energy and fewer emissions to recycle than to make things from scratch, which is why recycling saves a total of 18 million tonnes of CO2 a year in the UK" - wrap.org.uk
In order to move forward in our mission (the world’s, not ours, we’re just here to help out) of delivering a Net Zero future, we need to speed up our efforts to become a more sustainable, efficient economy when it comes to the use of resources.
Small changes can have a big difference on the health of the planet, and we encourage you lovely lot to help take actions.
So, what can you do?
Educating yourself around the best practices when it comes to recycling is a great start. Knowing what you can and can’t recycle could make a big difference to whether the materials in your bin can be reused or not.
Checking with your local council which materials can be recycled in your bin is also a super effective way of recycling efficiently.
Don’t be afraid to get creative, either. Learn how to mend old clothes rather than buying new ones, or buy second-hand from places like charity shops or online. That way, you’re giving life to something that would otherwise be thrown out.
Head to the Recycle Now website for more info, too!
Team Cheeky Panda x