BY YANN TEAR
Lewisham residents are being invited to check out quirky online videos which can improve their plastic recycling habits.
London Recycles – a consumer campaign set up to help Londoners recycle more – finds Lewisham residents are committed to recycling plastic, but lack understanding of the simple steps they can take at home.
Their research concludes 86 per cent of households in Lewisham are committed to reducing plastic waste – prompted in part by the BBC’s famous Blue Planet documentary highlighting the environmental impact of plastic. They are more aware of issues around single use plastic than this time last year.
When it comes to putting their passion for plastic reduction into practice, Lewisham is doing well. Seventy per cent are carrying keep cups and reusable water bottles to reduce plastic waste. In addition, 72 per cent say their knowledge of which single-use plastic items to avoid when out and about is good, very good or excellent.
But 37 per cent are either wrong or unsure about what they can recycle at home, meaning the borough’s residents are missing out on simple ways to make a huge difference.
Although 84 per cent say their knowledge of which plastic items can be recycled at home is good, very good or excellent, 42 per cent think spray cleaner bottles can’t be recycled, when in fact they can be.
Just over a quarter are not sure, or think, clear plastic trays and plastic shampoo bottles can’t be recycled, when they can be.
Almost half think that toothpaste tubes can be recycled – but they can’t.
To help Lewisham recycle more plastic, London Recycles has launched a online campaign called #knowyourplastic. It will feature short, quirky videos on social media supported by detailed information on www.recycleforlondon.com/know-your-plastic, to let people know how to recycle a wide range of common plastic items at home.
Ali Moore, campaign manager at London Recycles, said: “It’s fantastic to see Lewisham’s commitment to reducing plastic waste, but many are missing out on simple, free steps that can be taken at home.
“We’re encouraging everyone in Lewisham to have a look at our #knowyourplastic campaign to get super-confident about what plastics can and can’t be recycled.
“With 14 per cent of Lewisham residents having checked which plastic items they can recycle at home, it’s clear that we could definitely do more to recycle plastics and keep them out of the environment.”