Sky News Correspondent, Nick Martin, finds out what really happens to the rubbish we put in our recycling bins in OCEAN RESCUE. Once it leaves our households it becomes someone else’s problem, or in this case, another country’s problem - in landfill, sitting there doing nothing for months on end.
China, the largest importer of UK recycling shut its door at the start of 2018. And now, it seems, Thailand has adopted the rubbish China has rejected. Poland has ended up with our rubbish, too. In light of China’s decision, Michael Gove, Environment Secretary, has said that we should turn what is a challenge into an opportunity.
What we need to do is to make sure we reduce the level of waste we produce, and process more of it here in the UK. There is an overuse of plastic, for instance, plastic packaging and wrapping for supermarket fruit and vegetables. Maybe the argument for not selling more of these foods loose in boxes is based on the freshness and hygiene aspect.
During a conversation for the documentary, Plastics in Paradise, Paul Sharp from Two Hands Project said industry leaders need to make the conscious decision to supply pollution-free packaging and products. Sadly, single-use plastic is being washed up onto our beaches, a place seen as paradise for perhaps most of us. Volunteer beach cleaners are an important temporary solution to the problem faced on land, but we can’t ask or expect them to do this forever.
Look out for: The result of a problem pushed away from our shores. Cubes of plastic waste including other materials stacked on top of each other on foreign landfill sites. An eye-sore to say the least.
Starring:: Nick Martin
First Broadcast: 2017
Available On: Sky's Website