He's bin awfully good: Recycling champion fill just ONE bag of rubbish in a year

'I'm not doing this to score points off any other household in Birmingham, I'm just asking what could we feasibly get our recycling rate up to.

For recycling champion John Newson it's mission accomplished after he achieved his goal for 2012 of producing just ONE bag of rubbish for the year.

John, 60, has picked through his leftovers since last New Year's Day and has put all his uneaten food on a compost heap in his garden.

The self-employed environmental researcher does not eat meat or fish and even grows his own salad and fruits to cut down on supermarket packaging.

Marooned for Christmas: Holidaymakers rescued from cottage after being stranded for a week after Severn burst its banks


He also separates his cardboard, paper, plastic bottles, glass and cans for weekly kerbside collections.

He even travels to Bristol and London to recycle margarine tubs and Tetra Pak juice cartons because they have better recycling facilities than Birmingham.

His single bin bag is full of plastic film packaging which he cannot recycle and has been unable to find a use for in his home in Balsall Heath, Birmingham.

John, who is single, said: "People ask, 'Why on earth are you doing this?'

"I just wondered, if you compost absolutely everything that will rot and recycle everything you can, what will you be left with?

"I wanted to push myself to an extreme to see how far I could go.

"If you had six children and lots of disposable nappies it would be different.

"But I'm not doing this to score points off any other household in Birmingham, I'm just asking what could we feasibly get our recycling rate up to.

"I'd say that 80 to 90 per cent of all waste can be composted or recycled. At the moment in Britain it's currently about 30 percent.

"There are 52 weeks in the year and 400,000 households across Birmingham, so that's 20 million plastic bin bags that are being produced, distributed, collected and burned each year.

"Recycling some things is not that easy in Birmingham.

"I've taken some things, like drink cartons, to Lifford Lane recycling centre but there's a difference between what's possible and what's convenient."

POLL
Loading...
Poll Choice Options