Ireland recycling less than 1/3 of plastic waste generated

Ireland is recycling less than a third of the plastic waste it generates, Edie (Environmental Data Interactive Exchange), an European

environmental website, reports with reference to the “Irish Recycled Plastic Waste Arisings Study”.

The study, carried out by rx3 with funding from the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government of Ireland, revealed that in 2009, Ireland generated 482,366 tons of plastic waste but only 25% of this sum, or 124,424 tons, were collected for recycling. Nearly 64%, or 79,570 tons, of the collected plastic waste were exported for recycling. 71%, or 344,068 tons, of the total waste arisings were landfilled and 3% were used as refuse-derived/solid recovery fuels.

rx3 said the high dependence on export markets to recycle and process post-consumer recyclables has hindered the development of recycling business in the island. Although reprocessing capacity reached 319,800 tons based on data from 20 companies in June this year, actual reprocessing throughput amounted to 108,730 tons, about one-third of the total capacity.


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