Free Newspapers (Supplementary) [4]

Session date: 
November 18, 2006
Question By: 
Peter Hulme Cross
One London Party
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


A lot of this newsprint, which is collected for recycling, finds its way to the Far East, to China, to Malaysia, to Indonesia, where they apparently cope with it. We do not seem to be able to cope with it. What is your feeling about all this waste that we collect, and are supposed to be recycling, actually is recycled in the Far East, and not here?

Supplementary To: 


Answer for Free Newspapers (Supplementary) [4]

Answer for Free Newspapers (Supplementary) [4]

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Part of the case that the waste industry makes is that these huge tankers are going back empty, having delivered all their Chinese goods. However, clearly, there will be an environmental cost of just the extra weight on there, so I would like to move away from this. I would like us to recycle our waste in this city. That is why we are still negotiating to tie down the final borrowing deal with the bank, to make sure, in Barking, we open our plastics recycling plant, which would be capable of taking all plastic waste in London, so it would all be dealt with in London. It is absolutely ridiculous that we are not able to do the same with the bulk things, such as glass and paper. When I looked at the Evening Standard exposé of this, some of it did not look too bad, but when you know that when people say, `This is going to be recycled, it is all being incinerated, an awful lot of it'. So it is even worse than the Evening Standard made it look; incineration is not the way forward in handling our waste.