September 16th, 2016

Released without charge: inside England’s carrier bag data

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by Steve Watson

 

Back in July, six months after England adopted a five pence charge on single use plastic bags (SUPBs), the government released the first data showing how the measure has affected consumption. The headline figure reported in the media was a reduction of 83%, which looks like a fantastic result – especially considering that Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland reported smaller reductions of 76%, 80% and 71% in the first years of their respective bans.

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July 15th, 2016

Losing ground: the decline of England’s landfills

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by Chris Cullen

 

To hear many waste commentators talk, one would think that a huge proportion of the nation’s waste is still being sent to landfill. For example, as recently discussed on Isonomia, it is not uncommon to hear calls for landfill bans for specific materials, as if this would automatically entail that they were recycled, and we are frequently told of the benefits of getting waste ‘out of landfill’.

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May 27th, 2016

Myth takes – “Private bin collections would be cheaper”

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by Peter Jones

 

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that, as councils in the UK adopt two, three or even perhaps four weekly residual waste collections, some disgruntled folk start wondering whether they might be able to buy in more frequent collections privately. However, anyone who thinks that “going private” would be cheap, or might be covered by a rebate from Council Tax for those who opted out, would be in for a big surprise.

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May 6th, 2016

Myth-takes – “You can sort it all with machines”

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by Luke Dale-Harris and Peter Jones

 

Not long ago, The Spectator gave over a page to decry the plight of poor Mrs Ware, the “frail, elderly mother” of the article’s author, Michael. Mrs Ware, he wrote:

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April 29th, 2016

Going down the tubes: can automated waste collection work?

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by Hulda Espolin Norstein

 

What’s the most common and convenient way to receive your utilities? When it comes to gas, electricity, water, sewerage, internet connections and even television, the answer is obvious – underground pipes and cables. That’s led some to wonder why our waste is still stored and transported over ground. Surely someone could come up with a system in which waste is managed out of sight, doing away with all those polluting trucks and the problems of missing your collection.

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April 15th, 2016

Is there a clear vision for environmentally responsible eyewear?

Der Brillenmacher

by Amy Slack

 

A time comes in a lot of people’s lives when things start to become a bit blurry. Realising it’s not simply the side effect of a heavy night out, you take the dreaded trip to the opticians and discover that you no longer have perfect eye-sight and would benefit from corrective eyewear. Since that moment in my early 20s, my eyesight has very slowly been getting worse, my prescription changing slightly about every two years. I recently had my annual eye test and, predictably, was told that my prescription had once again changed: I now have astigmatism – great!

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March 11th, 2016

Rejected out of hand? Media stories on contamination and rats

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by Peter Jones

 

Media coverage of recycling hasn’t got off to a great start in 2016. After a short hiatus following my tussle with Richard Littlejohn last year, my complaints activity has unfortunately had to kick into overdrive. For the time being I’ll focus on four stories with which I’ve been able to make some headway so far this year – three papers’ coverage of recycling contamination, and one daft story about rats.

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