I read that it’s all my fault that recycling rates are so low. It’s because I don’t wash the food cartons and yoghurt pots enough before I put them into the bins. It’s also because I'm a "wishcycler" which is the process of putting items in a recycling bin instead of the waste even if you’re not sure whether they are recyclable or not. And it's because I rely on the information provided on labels and containers. Even worse, it's because I never seek guidance from my council but make assumptions based on my own ideas. All this (and more) is revealed in a report by the Centre for Social Innovation which is part of Keep Britain Untidy.
And there was I thinking that it was because there is still so much packaging that can’t be recycled no matter how clean it is. Because so many manufacturers persist in using plastic packaging when compostable or biodegradable alternatives are available or no packaging is needed. Because we buy so much useless tat that comes with excess packaging. Etc. Etc.
No, none of this, it seems, is the case. Rather, it's because we're just completely useless people who refuse to listen to the angelic host in Recycle Heaven whose chorus is that recycling will not just save the world in general, but deliver net-zero in particular. We all over-estimate the value of recycling, but none more so than those whose business it is to promote it.