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Where Can I Recycle......Plastic Bags?

Where can I Recycle...Plastic Bags

Image Credit: Jacqui O'Brien

Since the 5p plastic bag charge was introduced on 5th October 2015 in the UK, disposing of plastic bags has become much less of a problem for the vast majority of people; in fact many people cling onto one of these rare and precious items for dear life, using the bag until it is more confetti that container.

However if you still have a collection of bags that you want to get rid of - or need to know what to do with your bag when it is finally unusable - here are some possibilities.

How To Recycle Plastic Bags

It may be possible to put plastic bags in your household recycling collection, but this is pretty unusual, so check with your local council before putting any bags in your recycling bin. It is also uncommon for them to be collected at household recycling centres.

Most larger supermarkets offer plastic bag recycling, with a collection container either inside the shop or in an onsite recycling collection point if there is on.

Otherwise they have to go into your household waste for diposal, which means that they end up in landfill.

Reusing Plastic Carrier Bags

Ideally you should keep on using your plastic bags for your shopping until they are unusable, then place them in a recycling bin.

They can also be used as bin liners rather than buying new plastic bags, for using as nappy sacks and for collecting dog waste.

Some More Creative Ideas for Using Plastic Bags

The more creative amongst you may be able to use your bags for some craft projects - here are some ideas.

  1. Plastic can be cut into strips and knitted or crochet - the finished item is also waterproof.
  2. I love these carrier bag flowers which are easy enough for a child to make.
  3. You can even make the bags into wall art or a skirt.

Since the introduction of the plastic bag charge, reported plastic bag usage in the UK has been reduced by 80%, a huge success for the charge. Keep taking your own bags to the supermarket, it really is making a difference.

Related: How Do I Recycle Plastic?

About the Author: Jacqui O'Brien is the Editor of Reduce Reuse Recycle.

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