Leeds leads the way with on-the-go recycling

A new city-wide campaign aims to improve the quantity and quality of rubbish collected

Pathway to COP26 report

Leeds has launched a citywide campaign to improve recycling on-the-go.

Backed by industry, the scheme will trial a range of innovative ways to improve recycling rates, including the installation of eye-catching bins, recycling reward machines and a waste-based art installation.

Environmental behaviour change charity Hubbub and recycling compliance scheme Ecosurety have enlisted the support of a range of businesses, including Asda, Danone and Marks and Spencer.

In conjunction with Leeds City Council, they will work together to pilot new recycling facilities for plastic, cans and paper cups on the streets, in local offices, shopping centres, universities and transport hubs.

It will implement an app using bar codes and labelling on soft drinks packaging and coffee cups to provide clear instructions on what and how to recycle, with a map to find the nearest recycling points.

The UK currently throws away around 13 billion plastic bottles, nine billion drinks cans and 2.5 billion coffee cups each year, with only 42% of local authorities currently providing on-the-go recycling facilities.

The results of the trial will aim to inform national recycling initiatives across the rest of the country.

Gavin Ellis, Director and Co-Founder of Hubbub said “The huge range of eye-catching recycling bins and communications throughout Leeds city centre will make it really easy for residents, workers and visitors to spot their nearest recycling point.

“We’re interested to discover which of these will make the biggest difference and will share what we learn openly so that the most successful elements can be rolled out in Leeds and nationally. We’re also making sure that all of the recycling we collect will be processed in the UK as locally as possible.”

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