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Study gives tips on recycling

The results of a new study suggest that the involvement of the public and members of the collection crew at all stages of a scheme is the key to successful recycling initiatives.

The Corus-funded Targeting additional ferrous metals through local authority recycling programmes is intended to assist local authorities in their communications activities and help to increase recycling rates.

The general conclusions suggest that the most effective campaigns carry out communication and promotion, prior to, during and after the introduction of a kerbside scheme, while it is vital to gain residents views beforehand to ensure the scheme provides what they want.

Another major factor is the involvement and training of collection crews in the planning stages. Crews are “ambassadors” for the scheme and are a direct link with the householder.

Corus Steel Packaging manager John May said: “This research has revealed some valuable findings. Persuading the public to participate in recycling schemes is the key issue now that the necessary schemes are being put in place.”

In the research carried out by analyst Jennie Rogers, 62 local authorities stated their most common promotional work involved press articles, council newsletters and leaflets to residents.

This was despite the common assumption that radio adverts and websites were the most effective, while 66% believed funding should be shared by Government on a more equitable basis rather than authorities having to bid.

The study also suggested that it is important to understand the cultural diversity of residents, providing language translations, while to measure the impact of communications activity, participation rates should be monitored prior to and following.

May added: “Corus welcomes these findings as we are committed to helping local authorities and UK plc in achieving the EU targets set for 2008. This research, we hope, will assist local authorities in enhancing their individual recycling schemes.

“Ensuring that the public is well informed of what they can do to recycle steel and the fact that the cans are being properly recycled is a major objective.”

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