A public survey by the Industry Council for Packaging and the Environment (INCPEN) of 5,089 people in the UK shows 82% support the government’s “consistent recycling” policies.
The level of support is replicated across the devolved nations, with 86% in Northern Ireland, 85% in Scotland, and 84% in Wales.
In September, the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak scrapped what he described as “burdensome” proposals he said would have forced British people to have seven different bins in their homes.
Commenting on the decision at the time, Lee Marshall, CIWM Policy & External Affairs Director, said: “It is probably a first to have a Prime Minister scrap a policy that hasn’t been implemented and was never proposed in the first place.”
It is probably a first to have a Prime Minister scrap a policy that hasn’t been implemented and was never proposed in the first place.
CIWM also said it was “dismayed” to hear Rishi Sunak describe the consistent collection reforms as a “diktat” and “heavy-handed” given that the policy is about making household recycling easier.
Shortly after the PM’s statement, Defra (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) announced in an email that Thérèse Coffey is launching a new scheme called “Simpler Recycling”, formerly known as “Consistency in Recycling”.
INCPEN says every demographic group analysed in its survey supported consistent recycling and labelling. That includes age, gender, household income, rural or urban living, type of housing tenure and local recycling infrastructure.
The INCPEN survey also explored the extent to which consistency policies are a priority for the public, and when implementation should be done.
These citizens’ survey results demonstrate beyond any doubt that consistent recycling and labelling policies are massively supported.
35% of English respondents said the policy should be implemented by 2026 while 38% said the policy should be implemented without delay. Wales matches England’s combined 73% in favour while Scotland has a larger majority at 75% and Northern Ireland’s public is still higher at 78%.
Commenting on the survey’s results, Paul Vanston, CEO of INCPEN, said: “These citizens’ survey results demonstrate beyond any doubt that consistent recycling and labelling policies are massively supported by the public across the whole of the UK.
“When added to the many calls from manufacturers, brands, retailers, councils and waste management sectors for the government to publish the policies from the 2021 consultation on consistency, the common public and industry message is ‘let’s get on with it’.”