Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Praise the milkman!

No comments:
Following recent letters in the local press on the recycling of plastic milk bottles/cartons I’d like to sing the praises for my local milk delivery. Ok the milk costs a bit more but the service is great, other food/drink can also be delivered and the glass milk bottles are reused dozens of times – by far the most environmentally friendly option. Go to
http://www.milkdeliveries.co.uk/doorstep/ for more. We must not get over-hooked, as the council and government often are, on the idea of recycling as the greenest option.

Sam Weston’s letter to the Bristol Evening Post (‘Where can I recycle plastic milk cartons?’) first drew an editors comment and then several letters (‘Recycling’, Bristol Evening Post Soapbox, August 28) including from Janet Peacock, Mrs M Brannigan, and City Councillor Judith Price, who is the Executive Member for Neighbourhoods and thus has responsibility for waste management. All gave useful comments on plastic recycling but not one person pointed to the delivery of milk in reuseable glass bottles as the best option – Cllr Price in particular would have performed a good public service if she had pointed this out. Shifting to having milk delivered cuts down on plastic bottles massively. The council should be doing a lot more to promote waste reduction and reuse as the two best options.

I acknowledge that many things come in plastic bottles and other plastic containers or wrappers however. Its best to try to avoid these as far as possible (not always easy I know!) and the government should be doing more, legislating as required, to cut the use of plastic in short-life ways down to a minimum right at the source. This reduction approach is by far the best environmental option compared to going to the financial and environmental costs of collecting light, high volume plastics for recycling. However, since this is just not happening on a sufficient scale, the council could be doing more on plastic recycling as the next best option.