An interesting report from Panorama highlights issues with the Terracycle recycling initiative including the difficulty of participation with drop-off points in the community.

The report shown on TV on the 30th May focused on London and indicated that many drop off points collect just a single item. This suggested it could be difficult for the consumer to participate in this scheme, having to travel to multiple locations to drop off their items for recycling.

Many Terracycle community drop off locations accept multiple items, and make it a lot easier to get involved than shown.

Who are Terracycle

Terracycle’s mission is “Eliminating the Idea of Waste”. One of the ways to achieve this is to provide free and paid solutions to help individuals, offices, schools and businesses recycle many more items than they can through their kerbside recycling schemes. Working with large corporations, specific items can be passed back to source for recycling by the original manufacturer or recycled in one of their associated recycling plants. By organising a local collection point and sending items back to Terracycle, individuals or groups can also raise funds for their nominated non-for-profit organisations. To find out more go to: About TerraCycle · TerraCycle

Crisp packets are one of the many items Terracycle enable to be recycled

Other issues were raised in the BBC Panorama report, and the scheme is definitely not perfect. Large companies do need to do more and many people may see Terracycle as a green washing opportunity. However well run drop off points can collect huge amounts of items for recycling that would usually end up in the red bins destined for landfill or incineration.

Terracycle give their side of the story

Terracycle have released their recording of every question BBC Panorama asked Terracycle CEO Tom Szaky during the recorded 90 minute interview on 16th May. This full recording has been added to their website and can be seen here. If last nights programme raised more questions than answers, take a look at the recording to help you make your own informed decision about whether Terracycle works for you.

Where you can take part

There are a number of Terracycle collection points throughout Shropshire including in Much Wenlock, Telford, Newport, Ludlow and Shrewsbury. For an up to date map of locations Nationwide click here.

For up to date local green news, take a look at the Telford and Wrekin page With thanks to Telford and Wrekin Community Council for their support, enabling a dedicated Green Directory page to be set up for their community.

Follow our Telford and Wrekin facebook page here: /mossylifetelford

Does your town or county need a Green Directory to support your sustainability aims? Get in touch today and we can help provide a dedicated page for your area.

Caroline Talbot
Author: Caroline Talbot