Reducing Single-Use Plastics

Plastic Pollution is a serious problem for our oceans and local environments.  One way you can combat plastic waste is to reduce the amount of single-use plastics that you use. From reusable cups to shampoo bars, you can reduce your plastic consumption in so many ways.

Here are 3 easy ways to reduce your single-use plastic use:

  1. Say no to straws; unless you need to, say no to straws in drinks, alternatively why not consider a reusable straw. There are ones available made from paper, metal, bamboo or even glass.
  2. Swap plastic shopping bags with reusable ones. Reusable bags can be made from canvas, hessian or you could even make your own from old clothes.
  3. Buy a reusable cup or bottle. Some coffee shops or cafes will even offer a discount if you purchase a takeaway drink in your reusable cup.

If  you have a plastic free tip or have reduced your single-use plastic why not let us know on facebook and twitter.

Did you know?

The average UK household uses around 500 plastic bottles per year, but only recycles just over half of them.

Bottles make up 67% of household plastic packaging collections, including soft drinks, cosmetics and household and cleaning products. That’s 21 million bottles collected for recycling, which is only 58% of the plastic bottles that are used in households!

ALL types of plastic bottles can be recycled, including those used for cosmetics, shampoo, shower gel, juice, water, fizzy drinks, squash and more!

In Norfolk you can also recycle plastic pots, tubs, trays and punnets, that’s packaging items such as yoghurt pots, ice cream and margarine tubs, meat trays and fruit punnets. Just remove any shrink wrap and film and any absorbent packing or bubble wrap material.

Norfolk’s PET plastic bottles and HDPE milk bottles are currently recycled to make new food grade rPET and rHDPE bottles – making it a closed loop system.

Please make sure any plastic container or bottle is clean, dry and loose (not bagged) before it goes in your recycling bin.

So WHY Recycle?

Recycling decreases the need for raw materials, which helps save energy and carbon emissions:

  • It takes 75% less energy to make a plastic bottle from recycled plastic compared with using ‘virgin’ materials.
  • Recycling 1 tonne of plastic bottles saves ¾ of a tonne of carbon – this is the equivalent of travelling nearly 2,500 miles in car/taxi/motorcycle.

Plastics can be recycled into so many items! Clothing, t-shirts, toys, chairs and tables, headphones, kitchen utensils, paint pots, car parts, soft cuddly toys, filling for duvets and sleeping bags, pens and pencils, building materials such as fencing, flooring, piping, etc, garden furniture, buckets and of course, more plastic packaging … the possibilities are endless!


Did you know your favourite team maybe wearing football kits made from recycled plastic bottles?

How many bottles, on average it takes;

  • 8 recycled PET bottles make a football shirt
  • 3 recycled PET bottles to make a pair of eco headphones
  • 1,500 recycled HDPE milk bottles to make a picnic bench