We need to recycle plastic bottles and similar items, which I totally agree with. However there is a large flaw in they way we recycle them for example you go out for a day and want your favourite soft drink at say an event they either give you a plastic bottle or its in a plastic cup of some sort.
If it is at event I belie the organiser as part of the licence should provide proper recycling things and make sure they properly dispose of them. I can hear the organisers say that will cost us money, I say Yes, but the cost to your health and children health is far much more than this. However this will eventually make the organisers of the event put up ticket prices, but if they promise to recycle then I am happy to pay this little extra providing is it not too exorbitant, which I know the event people will try and charge us.
Then when you have finished the drink what to do with your bottle or cup? There may be bins around and if you are very lucky there is one dedicated to plastic bottles / cups but more often than not there is no where to dispose of your plastic bottles (yes you can take it home to recycle) so it goes in the general bin which is mostly overflowing with with rubbish of all kinds or if you are at a park there is typically only one type of bin available in the UK.
Yes you can brink your own drinks and drinking glasses from home and then you have to carry them all day and some event DO NOT allow you to bring in any outside food (Isle of Wight Music festival used to be one of them not sure if they still do this policy).
In my home town there are two bins normally next to each other and if you read them it does say general waste and recyclable which is ideal if you actually read them (but since they look exactly the same apart from the small writings on them), it is impossible to tell the difference. However I saw these bins being emptied one morning and the bags that are in the recycle bin goes into the same rubbish lorry as for land fill. So what is the sense of this?. Also they use black bag bin liners so unless you know which is which e.g. recyclables and land fill then you it is a pointless exercise by putting separate bins which everyone ignores anyway. They just see a bin and put everything in there!. But why are we using a black plastic bag in a Wheelie bin, this is madness, they say it keeps the bins clean, OK, but look in a bin it is not clean so why waste extra plastics to take out rubbish away?.
In Germany there are typically 4-5 bins together plastic. Paper, Glass, General, Paper etc and they use transparent plastic bags so when they go back to the plant it is easier to identify what is what. So can be recycled and not etc.
When I was at Kuala Lumpur airport recently I had a coffee and I had no option to ask for a china cup, as they did not supply them. They only supplied the drink in those cups which are almost impossible to recycle. Then I saw the employee bag up all the rubbish from the coffee area into one sack and I knew where that was going direct to land fill. They have an amazing opportunity here to recycle the items and tell the world about it, but no they go to land fill and sweep the problem under the carpet.
In other airports they offer china cups and the option to take a drink with you in a plastic of sorts cup. However in Asia there is a secondary screening of bags and you so you cannot take these drinks through security and therefore have to finish the drink before you go through security for the 2nd or 3rd time. So why then do they only offer these horrible plastic cups at coffee counters?
I am sure the airport or vendor will say something like it’s for the convenience of our customer to order a drink and then take it to the waiting area by the gate etc. But I would ask what about the environmental impact of all these cups just in one airport?. They would also say due to the large volume of customers we do not have the facility to wash up all those cups, well in other airports they do. In essence it is probably down to not wanting to employee a dishwasher or person to actually wash the cups, as the price of the drink included the cups which are just thrown away. We are paying for that every time we have a drink from a non disposable cup.
I saw a woman with a bottle of water which she purchased and had not drunk proceeded to her gate, but before the gate there was secondary screening and she said I have just purchased this at the kiosk inside the security cordon – These pleas did not wash with the screening staff, so she has to either drink the whole bottle there and then (1 Litre) or throw it away, she was not happy. She was frustrated as she had to throw the whole bottle away still unopened. This to me is madness and wasted money as well as to the environment. These kiosks should ask you which gate you are going from then refuse to sell it to you if you have to go through extra screening and say you can purchase one after the screening process. The airport kiosk made money, the woman lost money and the environment lost also as it was 1 litre of water and a plastic bottle to Landfill or special incineration as the items have to be disposed of in a safe and secure way as it it is taken off you at a secure area? So this costs even more money for the airport and that means the landing fees/price of items will have to be put up to cover these costs. So who actually wins in this situation, I can only see one the kiosk who sold her the bottle in the first instance, the rest are additional costs that were added on indirectly and then passed to us consumers to bear.
This is how the Philippines does some recycling of plastic bottles
Recycling plastic bottles as planters painted yellow
I have now set up a new blog at www.michaelcrawfordhick.com and as of around the End of May 2017 this blog will be deleted.