Ken launches London recycling campaign

Ken Livingstone has announced a £3.5 million advertising campaign encouraging Londoners to recycle more waste, stepping up his war on waste in the capital.

Using the tag line “London, let’s recycle more”, the London Mayor’s campaign will compliment defra’s recently launched Recycle Now initiative (see related story), making Londoners aware of the recycling facilities that are available to them.

Mr Livingstone hopes the campaign will further improve recycling figures in the city, where 75% of residents now have a recycling collection service that visits their homes.

“Recycling services across the capital have improved dramatically but many people still do not know about them or use them as much as they could,” he stated. “This campaign aims to get people recycling not just old newspapers and wine bottles, but items they may not have realised they could recycle, such as telephone directories and aerosol cans.”

If we are to meet Government targets of recycling 25% of our waste in the UK by 2005, then British people need to make the right choice, Mr Livingstone said.

The launch was also headed by TV gardener and presenter, Charlie Dimmock, who said she hoped the campaign would encourage more people to join the recycling effort:

“London is a great, vibrant city and we are getting much better at recycling each year, but we still have to do more. There are many more things that can be recycled.”

Large billboard adverts will soon appear across London, posters will be displayed on the London Underground, and adverts will also be seen online and in around 70 local London newspapers.

Defra has also recently set up a waste implementation programme to fund research into innovative technologies and processes that will help England meet targets to reduce landfilled biodegradable municipal waste by 25% by 2010.

Environment Minister Elliot Morley said that increasing recycling was vital to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill, along with reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“Sustainable waste management is now a commercial imperative, not just an environmental ideal,” Mr Morley pointed out. “With good management, we can achieve greater resource productivity and a cleaner, better protected environment.”

By Jane Kettle

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