Devon Household Waste Plastic Recycling

“What percentage of Devon household waste plastic that is recycled, combusted in power plants, goes to landfill, and is sent abroad?”

 In 2018/19:

·   7045 tonnes of household plastic waste from kerbside recycling collections were recycled.  

·   The kerbside rubbish (black bag/bins waste) goes to energy recovery plants. A 2017 analysis of kerbside rubbish showed that 14.4% of this was plastic. This amounts to 18,000 tonnes. Some of this had been put in the wrong bin by householders and some is not the type of plastic that can currently be recycled either operationally or economically such as plastic film.  

·   The majority of kerbside plastic is processed in the UK. Less than 2% was sent abroad (to Turkey).

·   No kerbside rubbish (black bag/bin waste) is landfilled. No kerbside rubbish is sent abroad.

·   So for kerbside, approximately 28% recycled; 72% energy recovery.

In addition to kerbside collections, 1,360 tonnes of plastic were recycled from Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs). The majority is processed in the UK. A small amount goes to Holland. We do not have an analysis of the residual (rubbish) from HWRCs so cannot calculate a percentage. Some of the rubbish goes to landfill; some to energy recovery.

You may be interested to review ‘Where do our Plastics Go‘, which details the process for recycling plastics as at June 2019.  Further information is held by District and Unitary councils in Devon. Please contact them directly using the information on the links provided.