Last week, it became clear that a radical policy change will be needed for the UK to hit its household recycling target of 50% by 2020.
Figures from the end of December 2016 show a 0.6% decline from 2014’s peak of 44.8% to 44.2% at the end of 2016. These figures reveal a worrying trend that current household recycling rates in England have stagnated at under 45% and are a long way off our 2020 target.So what’s holding us back? “A clear national strategy to end stalling rates of recycling is still required,” said waste firm SUEZ’s chief executive David Palmer-Jones. “To increase household recycling rates, Government needs to integrate waste and recycling planning into a modern Industrial Strategy which values the things we throw away as raw materials for manufacturing, and as an energy resource.”
At Jump we know one of the key barriers to recycling is a lack of information and a lack of incentives for people to engage with the information provided to them and change their current recycling behaviours. Our recycling reward schemes engage with communities to encourage residents to reduce, reuse and recycle by using a combination of web and app platforms, communications campaigns and face to face engagement to connect with our target audience. We find rewards and incentives key to promoting ongoing behaviour change, so we reward members of our campaigns with points for every positive step they take – whether it’s preventing food waste, recycling more, using a Bring bank or reducing contamination. Residents work together to earn the most points and win prizes for their local community.
Thanks to our Jump scheme, Camden Recycling Rewards, residents in the London Borough of Camden are recycling 10% more of their household items that they did last year. Our recycling reward scheme in the London Borough of Bexley, London Green Points – Bexley, has recently been shortlisted for a prestigious LGC Environmental Services award. Bexley has the highest household recycling rate in the capital (52%) which is well above the national average. The Local Green Points scheme enabled Bexley to engage with communities in some of the Borough’s most deprived and hard to reach areas. A Bexley member of the London Green Points – Bexley scheme said: “I wasn’t recycling until Local Green Points came along”.