More jobs, less waste

Our new research shows over 70,000 new jobs could be created in the UK by recycling more.

Friends of the Earth has published a new report 'More jobs, less waste’.

It shows that at least 51,400 new jobs would be created across the UK if we recycled 70% of the waste collected by local councils.

Over 18,800 more jobs could be created if we recycled commercial and industrial waste at the same rate.

Wales and Scotland both plan to recycle 70% of council-collected waste by 2025.

But Northern Ireland and England - where the vast majority of waste is generated - are still aiming to recycle only half of it.

Review of waste policy

The Coalition Government is currently reviewing waste policy in England. We're calling on the Government to set more ambitious recycling targets.

If the Coalition is serious about creating a green, jobs-rich economy then it must unlock the wealth in our waste and help consumers to recycle as much as possible.

Julian Kirby, waste campaigner, Friends of the Earth

Half a million new EU jobs

The research also shows if the whole of Europe recycled 70% of its waste, it would create more than half a million new jobs.

Flanders in Belgium already recycles over 70% of its waste.

The report also shows that recycling creates around ten times more jobs per tonne than sending rubbish to landfill or incineration.

Further information

More jobs, less waste
September 2010 (PDF† 1975Kb)

More information on Friends of the Earth's waste campaigning.