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Household recycling rates up 7 per cent on last year

In the past 15 years, we’ve recycled 651,000 tonnes of waste in Ireland, six times the amount recycled in 1998.

Models Roz Purcell and Tiffany Stanley, marking the launch of Repak Recycling Week 2012.
Models Roz Purcell and Tiffany Stanley, marking the launch of Repak Recycling Week 2012.
Image: Shane O’Neill/Fennells

THE AVERAGE IRISH household recycling rate has increased from 58 per cent in 2011 to 65 per cent this year. These good habits have also been transferred to the office with an 8 per cent uptake in recycling at work compared to 2011.

The research, carried out for Repak Recycling Week, which begins today, also shows that around 70 per cent of people think producers or retailers should pay for the recovery and recycling of the packaging they supply but only a quarter of people are aware that they currently do this.

Consumer research also shows that government proposals are unpopular with 70 per cent of people opposed to a visible fee on packaging to support the recycling of the item and less than 5 per cent of consumers support the ‘deposit and refund’ system over ‘existing kerbside and bring’ collection systems.

In the past 15 years, there have been notable changes in recycling trends with 651,000 tonnes recycled last year in Ireland,  six times the amount recycled in 1998. In 2011, over 66 per cent of packaging was recycled versus 15% in 1998. Repak attribute these accomplishments to:

  • Better collection infrastructure, as 95 per cent of homes now have kerbside collections, up from 50,000 in 1998.
  • More awareness of recycling and of the environment.
  • A polluter pays principle with introduction of pay by weight and pay by use bin charges.
  • High landfill levies to support alternatives to landfilling.
  • Improved recycling and recovery options.

Do you recycle?


Poll Results:

Yes (278)
No (278)
Sometimes (27)



More: In numbers: Ireland’s growing recycling trend >

About the author:

Amy Croffey

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