The Big Plastic Count, the UK’s biggest ever investigation into household plastic waste, kicks off today (16 May 202).
Over 140,000 are planning to take part across the country, including schools, MPs, community groups, businesses, families and individuals. The Big Plastic Count is a collaboration between Everyday Plastic and Greenpeace UK.
Celebrities including Chris Packham, Joanna Lumley and Bonnie Wright are taking part, and 94 MPs from across the house, 3,500 school classes from all over the UK and People’s Postcode Lottery have also signed up.
‘The UK is one of the worst plastic polluters in the world. Our broken recycling system doesn’t work so instead of dealing with our plastic waste ourselves, we send vast quantities of it overseas where it’s out of sight and out of mind for us, but destroying nature and harming people elsewhere.
‘The Big Plastic Count is such an exciting project. It will, for the first time, tell ordinary people what happens to their plastic waste after we throw it away, and we hope it will force the government to take action and address the plastic waste crisis.’
Broadcaster and campaigner
A snapshot of our plastic waste
The UK produces more plastic waste per person than any other country except the USA. In 2018, the country generated 5.2 million tonnes of plastic waste, enough to fill Wembley Stadium six times over.
The UK also exports vast quantities of plastic waste abroad, as highlighted last year by Greenpeace’s Wasteminster viral animation.
The Big Plastic Count will reveal how much plastic packaging waste is leaving UK homes and what happens to it after we throw it away. This will provide a national snapshot of our plastic waste problem, filling a crucial evidence gap and showing the government and supermarkets that they must act to tackle the problem.