A critical review of household recycling barriers in the United Kingdom

Oluwadipe, Saeed, Garelick, Hemda ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4568-2300, McCarthy, Simon ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0981-8584 and Purchase, Diane ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8071-4385 (2022) A critical review of household recycling barriers in the United Kingdom. Waste Management and Research, 40 (7) . pp. 905-918. ISSN 0734-242X [Article] (doi:10.1177/0734242X211060619)

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The UK recycling rate fluctuates between 45% and 47% and has consistently failed to meet the 65% target set by the post-Brexit Resource and Waste Strategy. Understanding the issues surrounding the low recycling rate in metropolitan cities in the UK will help to overcome these recycling challenges. The review examines the current situation with regards to the recycling rate and tonnage of waste produced in the UK based on available secondary waste flow data and explores different barriers related to household recycling. Many areas giving rise to the recycling challenges have been identified, including waste policy constraints, lack of effective communication, public engagement, physical barriers, service constraints, human factors, and socio-economic barriers. The literature review reveals factors such as waste policy, communication, and physical factors were the most important aspects in influencing recycling rate or output. It is concluded that a multi-dimension intervention is required, which includes a thorough review of waste policy, a more stringent enforcement, an improved communication strategy, and a more integrated planning development policy to mitigate issues affecting the UK’s low recycling rate or output. This approach will propel the local authorities to launch or initiate effective recycling management and to put in place the required infrastructure to facilitate effective recycling activities.

Item Type: Article
Keywords (uncontrolled): Recycling, Waste Management, Barriers, Sustainable Waste Storage, Waste Planning, Behaviours, Deposit Return Scheme, Urban Environment
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Natural Sciences
Item ID: 34136
Notes on copyright: Oluwadipe S, Garelick H, McCarthy S, Purchase D. A critical review of household recycling barriers in the United Kingdom. Waste Management & Research. 2022;40(7):905-918. doi:10.1177/0734242X211060619. © The Author(s) 2021.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).
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Depositing User: Diane Purchase
Date Deposited: 05 Nov 2021 13:40
Last Modified: 05 Oct 2022 11:34
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/34136

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