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What happens to the District Council’s plastic waste…?

  • by JW

How much of our ‘recycled’ plastic is ending up in Malaysia?

Earlier this week, BBC One followed the rubbish our councils collect:

War on Plastic with Hugh and Anita

A call to arms to fight the ‘war on plastic’


The Sidmouth Plastic Warriors’ chair, Denise Bickley, is now a District Councillor – and she reports on a visit to see what happens to our plastic waste:


EDDC/Suez Resource Recycling Centre (RRC) Trip 12th June 2019

Today Councillors with an interest in waste and recycling went along for a trip around East Devon’s RRC at Greendale. What an eye opener – even just turning into the Greendale site took my breath away – the sheer size of the industrial site is staggering. East Devon/Suez just have a little bit of it, Unit 42, for the RRC, and it takes a bit of finding, tucked away in one sector…



Suez cannot tell us what criteria the contractors they sell to operate under as it is ‘commercially sensitive’. I raised the point that how then can we confidently say that nothing goes abroad, if we don’t know who it is being sold to, and if the market drops out of certain types of plastic how can we stop someone dumping it abroad? Answer…commercially sensitive but am assured by Suez that all EDDC’s go to UK Market – but what happens to it after that???

The Suez Trading team broker metals (aluminium and steel), cardboard and plastics (Plastics go to Roydon in Manchester who apprently always take ours because they know it is good quality. Investigate what happens next) James assures me that Rowden have to have the same standards as Suez when it comes to Environment Agency permits…

An interesting discussion happened after the meeting re Crisp packet recycling with Terracycle… not worth it according to Gareth as it ends up being exported to the South of France. Arguably better just to burn them for energy… more research needed


EDDC/Suez Resource Recycling Centre (RRC) Trip 12th June 2019


See also:

Where exactly is our ‘recycled’ plastic ending up?