Householders encouraged to recycle
Recycling Christmas leftovers could save 46,000 tonnes of carbon, the equivalent or taking 29,900 cars off the road, according to Repak.
The recycling company estimate that 70,000 tonnes of packaging waste was generated over Christmas, a 25 per cent increase on the usual amount over a similar time period.
This includes 49 million beer bottles, which would cover the route to Lapland and back over five times, as well as 20 million soft drink cans and 5 million boxes of chocolate.
There has been a 6.5 fold increase in Christmas household packaging recycling rates since 2001. During Christmas 2011, 36,500 tonnes of used packaging was recycled, while in 2001, 31,000 tonnes was recycled throughout the year.
This year, Repak, which is a non-profit organisation, is aiming to collect over 37,000 tonnes and recycle around 55 per cent of the Christmas packaging. To help ease the recycling process, Repak are advising people to keep all recyclables separate, wash and squash all glass and plastic containers and fold all boxes.
Smartphone users can all download the Recycle More App or visit their website to find local collection dates and recycling centre opening times. The app is available for Android and Apple phones and tablets.
According to Repak's head of sales and marketing Darrell Crowe there was a 7 per cent increase in recycling from 2010 to 2011. Mr Crowe hopes the app will further enocourage recycling habits this year.
“With the Christmas festivities, people will have more used packaging to recycle than normal, placing more pressure on recycling collection infrastructure. To help people find outlets for this excess used packaging Repak have developed a Recyclemore smartphone app,” he said.
“This helps users find information on your nearest recycling facility or alternate bottle bank on the Recyclemore app making recycling more convenient than ever particularly when out and about.”