Probably the biggest con foisted on Johnny Taxpayer in recent years. On the face of it, the concept of recycling seems ethical, until one looks at it in any depth. The wheels rapidly come off.
A huge industry has grown around recycling, with taxpayers footing the bill for millions of plastic boxes and Wheelie Bins that they carefully and dutifully filled with tins, plastics and newspapers. Each district council has its own take on what goes in which box, so it's unsurprising that the whole thing is a confusing mess with no central control. What's acceptable in Leicester could possibly land you a hefty financial penalty three miles down the road.
The carefully separated waste is then collected and tipped in to the back of a bin wagon that might turn up once a fortnight... if you’re lucky. Then, at the recycling depot, the waste is shovelled in to ISO containers, whereupon it is transported to Felixstowe and loaded on to a fucking enormous container ship. It is then shipped to Ghana or China, where the foreign devils welcome all our shit with open arms. It is then bulldozed in to massive landfill quarries.
The whole process - from your front door to Xyingyang Provincial Shit-Tip - takes nearly three weeks and generates over 350,000³ tons of CO² per day, thereby transforming vast tracts of Arctic tundra in to lush sub-tropical wilderness. And you thought recycling was about saving the planet?
Only a very small percentage of recyclable crap actually gets used to make anything else... or rather did, as – thanks to the Credit Crunch - the bottom has fallen out of the market for reusable materiel. Thus even the small percentage of recyclable rubbish that was actually of any use is now useless. Even the Chinese have lost interest.
Recycling contributes more to Global Warming than if you were to spend every waking hour in your back yard, shovelling all your household rubbish on to an enormous bongey and pumping a couple of tons of CO² in to the ether during the process. Unfortunately - for the local council - this is unregulat... erable. [Is that a real word? It is now!]
Take Leicester for instance. The city has a population of 280,000 who pay on average around £1500 per annum. Leicester City Council thus make well over £400 million beer tokens largely on the back of waste disposal and recycling - and the inherent guilt trip that goes with it.
So, the next time you’re diligently sorting your tins and plastics in to colour-coded boxes, think not of a sad-eyed polar bear clinging to an ice cube for dear life in the rolling swell of the balmy Arctic Ocean, but rather some fat-arsed Lesbian Outreach Initiative Co-Ordinator sipping a pinacolada on a ‘fact-finding’ trip to the Maldives... at your expense.