People didn’t used to throw things away. We mended out our clothes and we used to wear shoes until they wore out and we didn’t buy so much in the first place. But now we consume more and so we produce more rubbish.
The UK used to be one of the worst recyclers in Europe, but the Recycle Now campaign has made a big difference. It has an annual recycle week and has made TV commercials showing the recycling of metal cans, glass bottles and paper into interesting new everyday items. One ad showed a town with cars, trains, buildings and even planes made of metal cans.
Top UK designer Oliver Heath is a strong supporter of the campaign he designed the first home constructed entirely from recycled materials, including yoghurt pots and glass bottles. He is excited by the imaginative recycling of waste. There is an awful lot of exciting design stuff out there. I like all the uses for ordinary products such as glass bottles turned into pencils. You can also buy pens made from recycled computer printers, T-shirts made from plastic bags.
So don’t throw things away! All the items you recycle are valuable resources and can be made into something useful, even stylish and fun. In the USA they’ve made chairs from old books, plant pots from shoes and even a house from a jumbo jet. The possibilities are endless!