27 Jul 2016
People in Wales are being encouraged to swap black for green as research into what’s still being put into black bags found a quarter of our waste is made up of food and another quarter of potentially recyclable material.
This could hold the key to reaching our recycling targets ahead
of time and boosting the Welsh economy. In fact, if just half of
all the food and dry recyclables found in Wales' bins were
recycled, Wales would reach its statutory 2025 recycling target of
70% nine years early.
by WRAP Cymru, on behalf of the Welsh Government, was
published ahead of the Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Rural
Affairs, Lesley Griffiths' first statement in the Senedd, during
which she set out her priority to create a more circular economy in
Wales. It is estimated a circular economy has the potential to
create around 30,000 jobs in Wales, with people employed to
collect, transport, re-process and re-manufacture these materials,
and could have an economic benefit of more than £2billion a year.
The Towards Zero Waste
strategy is all about making sure valuable
material resources are kept in productive use for as long as
possible and aligns to the circular economy concept.
The analysis by WRAP reveals the latest recycling trends in
Wales, and while there has been a 14% increase in
recyclable materials being recycled from homes, bins
across Wales are still being filled with items which can easily be
recycled or reused. As well as food waste and dry recyclables, the
study found 17% of waste electrical and electronic
equipment and 50% of clothing and textiles were
sent to landfill.
Lesley Griffiths said:
"It's great to see people's recycling habits are
significantly improving. However, this research shows there's still
more we can do to meet our aim of being a zero waste nation by
"As well as the obvious environmental benefits, being a
high-recycling society provides the basis for a strong circular
economy. Re-circulating high value materials has an enormous
potential to boost the Welsh economy, create jobs re-processing
these materials here in Wales and lower our carbon
"Our research into recycling habits is important in
informing our work to meet our recycling targets. While there is
much to celebrate it shows just small changes in people's recycling
can have enormous environmental and economical benefits. We will
now look to do more to develop the circular economy and increase
The Welsh Government's strategy for waste, Towards Zero Waste:
One Wales One Planet, sets out ambitions for the country to become
a high recycling nation by 2025 and a zero waste nation by 2050.
The Strategy will be undergoing review in the course of the next