Recycling of plastic bottles

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 and as of around the End of May 2017 this blog will be deleted.


Energy Saving Halogens???

OK, as an electrician I have fitted many hundred of these in homes, and to see that they want to ban them, replace them with energy efficient versions, I say NO.

For a number of reasons

  • They cost more
  • The light is not the same both in output and colour temperature i.e. they will not be this mice warm orange glow, but a horrible white, blue or green light that fluorescent give out.
  • If they are a fluorescent version the existing dimmer will NOT work and all of my client have paid for dimmer that are now useless.  There are alternatives, but they are VERY expensive and only work with a few types of “energy Saving bulbs ” in the whole range on the shelf, so in short useless expense.
  • florescent versions Do NOT WORK AT 12 V they need min 100 Volts, so all the wiring will have to change, so will these bulbs have step up transformer in them, plus all the electronics???
  • It will destroy the “mood” that these halogen lights give out, houses will have to be redesigned in the terms of lighting now.

It seems using a sledge hammer to crack a walnut type scenario and has to stop.

Yes I am interested in saving energy as the next person, but do what I was told as a kid, if you go out of the room and may not come back “TURN THE LIGHT OFF” as my mother would shout down the hall when I usually left the bathroom – I got the message.

Also another way to save money on electrics, is take that phone charger out of the wall or turn the switch off when it is not charging the phone, this can save you up to £1 per week, every week per phone, so if you have 2 phones per household that over £100 saved per year.

Turn off the TV at the switch NOT the standby button, as the TV takes around 50-75% of the power compared to switch one, this goes for the Hi Fi as well.

When will these government stop meddling in this small scale “energy saving” initiatives and look to the larger picture.

Just one last thought I was doing some calculations on a back up generator scenarios for power cuts in a rural part of the country and I got some energy saving bulbs to look up their wattage, so an 11 watt bulb OK, but wait why does it draw 60 ma? more calculations and Yes the bulb takes 11 watts, but the electronics inside take another 10-11 wats, making this bulb in fact draw 22 watts of electricity, and it replaces a 40 watt bulb and you need at least 2 of these to get the same light, mmm this calculated at 44 wats, and the old one only took 40 watts, mmmm who is getting their calculations wrong here? 


So in conclusion it takes 4 watts more to make the same light, costs us more to buy the bulbs and really does not help the environment in any way, there will be more CO2 gasses etc. 


here’s the link to the newspaper article that spurred this little blog entry–alternative-costs-times-more.html

plastics and the Ocean

Please see this page it’s disheartening to see these animals in distress

Lets do somethingabout it, please world –

Get rid of palstic – we never used to need it in the quantities we do now

Plastics, wildlife and the Ocean

Hello all

You must read this and try to stop this happening, not sure how, ideas by email please

warning some of the images are quite disturbing



More Rubbish

Since writing my last article on rubbish I went out to the shore line today and found lots and lots of rubbish, plastic, bottles, bags everything, saying that there were crabs there just getting on with their lives, making their homes, eating and carefully avoiding the rubbish left by us humans.

I Caught something - OH a Crisp BAG 😦

I Caught something - OH a Crisp BAG 😦

General stuff from the sea front area in Penang :((

Unfortunately this is not just a local problem, Its WORLD WIDE, how can we get away from the unnecessary use of plastic bags in our lives – Yes through Education, but it’s needs a few think tanks to see how we can do it, but it never used to be there, plastic is a relatively new invention compared to the paper bag,

I can see some uses of plastic bags and wrapping, but for example why does a cucumber need a plastic wrap on it? and then potatoes, tomatoes and other fruits do not need this – its unnecessary.

Come on Industry, and think tanks how do we tackle this on a world wide scale then??????

Links to the high resolution photographs these can be found on