#Immediacy on speech making

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  • Rubbish where next...
  • For The Recycling Consortium (TRC), which is based in Bristol, in the South West of the UK, the 3R’s are the only way to deal with the waste we produce. TRC promotes ways to reduce, re-use, recycle and compost. By advancing sustainable ways to deal with our waste, TRC believe that we all benefit - as do our planet and our environment.


IRAIN - Thirty-six per cent of families do not have the use of a....

Thirty-six per cent of families do not have the use of a car. One survey found that 70 per cent of people liked clothes shopping and 61 per cent enjoyed shopping for records and tapes, whereas 68 per cent often found supermarket grocery shopping tiring and 31 per cent said they frequently ended up with a headache. WHAT NEEDS TO CHANGE: Supermarket chains must not only listen carefully to consumer concerns about health and environmental damage but also about unnecessary waste.

The next green issues on the agenda include over-packaging and re-usable packaging, offering locally grown produce, honest and accurate nutritional labelling, and personal assistance for the disabled and those without access to a car. WHAT YOU CAN DO: Think about where you shop; don't just use the superstore because everyone else does. If you can, buy fresh food daily, using local suppliers and retailers (this helps to keep money and jobs within the local economy). Decide what you want to buy before you visit the supermarket.

Try to avoid tins and packets: they are less healthy than fresh food and you pay for the packaging. Look out for nutritional and country-of-origin labelling. If you are shopping with young children, don't be swayed by advertising-induced demands for sweets; give them an apple or some dried fruit instead.

Lobby your council for a bus service to 'out-of-town' shopping centres to reduce the use of cars. Supermarket managers are increasingly aware that they must take their customers' green concerns into account, and most companies take customers' comments seriously. If something concerns you - if they don't stock organic vegetables or don't have recycling facilities outside, for example - use supermarket suggestion boxes or speak to the manager.

UNDERSTANDING THE PROS AND CONS OF SUPERSTORES - WHO BENEFITS? You: To a large extent the psychology of supermarket selling relies on the trance-like state of the shopper. The less trance-like your state, the more likely you are to buy the healthy, environment-friendly food that you really need, rather than over-packaged junk. Other people: The people you prepare food for will benefit from your wise buying decisions, as will the growers and manufacturers of healthy food and groceries.

The environment: When people buy healthier, more ecologically sound, minimally packaged and locally produced products they reduce waste and pollution, and save resources. OVERCOMING THE THROWAWAY MENTALITY - THE FACTS: Nobody knows exactly what proportion of the things we buy are made specifically to be thrown away again almost immediately, but an informed guess would be about 15 per cent by weight and 25 per cent by value. We do know that nearly a quarter of the plastic and almost half of the paper used in The UK goes into packaging and very short-lived products like newspapers and plastic cutlery. The 23 million tonnes of domestic rubbish we throw out every year might seem a lot, but add 100 million tonnes of industrial waste, 130 million of mineral spoil, 200 million of agricultural leftovers and 30 million of sewage, and you begin to see the scale of the problem.

Government officials reckon that 55 to 60 per cent of domestic refuse could be reclaimed, and this is true of other sorts of waste too. The cash value of these materials is in excess of £2 billion a year, not to mention the £650 million it costs us to collect, transport and dispose of the discarded materials. The problem of waste is particularly intractable in our cities. Fourteen million tonnes a year of London waste are carried up to 40 kilometres (64 km) to landfill sites in seven counties.

We are running out of places to put our rubbish, and pollution....

We are running out of places to put our rubbish, and pollution problems at existing tips are growing ever more serious. In 2007 escaping methane from a tip in Derbyshire dem... read more

Things obviously do need to be packaged - for security, for hygiene,....

Things obviously do need to be packaged - for security, for hygiene, and to a certain extent for convenience. This does not, however, expl... read more

Visit the INCPEN, the Industry Council for Packaging and the Environment website....

Visit the INCPEN, the Industry Council for Packaging and the Environment website for further information. INCPEN is a research organisation, which draws... read more