How does the UK dispose of waste?

Where does Britain’s waste go?

The top three countries for UK waste exports are Turkey (39%), Malaysia (12%) and Poland (7%). All three countries have very low recycling rates and a serious problem with plastic waste being dumped or burned illegally. The volume of plastic waste shipped to Turkey increased by 36% compared with 2019.

How much waste goes to landfill in the UK?

The State of The Nation: Recycling in The UK

Of the 26m tonnes of waste produced in the UK, 12m tonnes are recycled, and 14m tonnes are sent to landfill sites.

Does the UK dump plastic in other countries?

More than half of the plastic the British government says is being recycled are sent overseas, often to countries without the necessary infrastructure to do so. The UK exported 688,000 tonnes of discarded plastic packaging in 2020, a daily average of 1.8m kilos.

How much does the UK waste?

The UK generated 222.2 million tonnes of total waste in 2018, with England responsible for 84% of the UK total.

Is the UK running out of landfill space?

The UK’s landfill capacity is diminishing. In 2017, it was calculated that England has 6.8 years left of non-hazardous landfill capacity (Tolvik Consulting, 2017). This contributes to an accumulative waste capacity deficit.

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Why does the UK export waste?

Why do we currently export some of our plastic waste for recycling? The UK currently exports plastic because there is not enough capacity within the UK to recycle it. In 2019, the UK exported 61% of its plastic packaging for recycling.

What does the UK do with plastic waste?

Greenpeace has reported that less than 10 per cent of everyday plastic waste is recycled in the UK, with some being incinerated, adding toxic chemicals to the atmosphere, or forgotten in landfills. The rest – nearly 540,000 tonnes – is exported to other countries.