Recycling : Survey: Citizens Across 14 Countries Want to Recycle on the Go, But Lack Infrastructure

Every Can Counts recycling alupro waste
© Every Can Counts

A research survey conducted across 14 countries by the LUCID polling agency in association with Every Can Counts has found that more than 94% of British respondents would like to see more on-the-go recycling points installed in public places.

According to the research, while 89% of UK respondents said that they recycle drinks packaging when at home, this number drops to just 41% when out and about. 89% admit that they face numerous problems recycling on-the-go – listing a lack of infrastructure (58%) and overflowing bins (22%) as the key barriers.

When it comes to large gatherings, such as sporting events and festivals, 94% of UK respondents believed recycling provisions were currently sub-par. What’s more, a resounding 92% suggested that these events should only use recyclable drink containers.

Rick Hindley, director of Every Can Counts, commented: “While it’s hugely positive news to hear that the general public are committed to recycling at home, a perceived lack of sufficient infrastructure in public spaces is proving seemingly damaging to national packaging recycling rates.

“More than 90% of people in the UK believe that it is more important to recycle now than ever before, yet the barrier of inadequate infrastructure is proving a clear obstacle. Alongside investing in more on-the-go recycling points, we need to ensure that packaging is quick and easy to recycle.

“Aluminium drink cans are the perfect example. Made from a completely circular, highly- valuable, single-source material, they can be recycled an infinite number of times. These qualities are the reason why drink cans are both widely and easily recycled; attributes which in turn make recycling easier for everyone.”

Since 2009, Every Can Counts has worked to increase awareness about recycling drink cans, with the vision of realising 100% drink can recycling rates across Europe. While almost 75% of drink cans are currently recycled in Europe, only 70% of people could identify them as infinitely recyclable.

Hindley continued: “Ensuring the public understands the importance and value of recycling is imperative. While improving infrastructure is essential, we need people to know exactly why they should recycle – whether at home or on-the-go.”

Elsewhere in the survey, 93% of UK respondents considered recycling to be everyone’s responsibility. What’s more, while 73% stated that they had recycled more than ever during the pandemic, 82% felt that more needed to be done in general to encourage people to recycle.