Anyone who has caught the tube or been out on the streets of London recently will probably have spotted the distinctive posters advertising London's recycling campaign. The ads borrow designs from some famous brands, replacing the product name with the slogan 'London, Let's Recycle More'.
Ad featuring the Hellmann's Mayonnaise, Robertson's Jam (?), Branston's Pickle and Marmite brands.
The campaign, part of the national Recycle Now initiative, aims to raise awareness of the increased availability of doorstep recycling collections (available to 75% of London households, up from 57% in 2001-2). According to the press release, more and more products can now be recycled, including the Yellow Pages and aerosol cans.
In 2003/4, London recycled just 11% of its household waste. When you consider that in many European countries, like Germany, this figure is well above 50%, 11% looks pathetic.
In my flat in Hackney last year, there was a weekly green box collection. Though ours was missing when we moved in, I requested a replacement and it arrived fairly quickly. Unfortunately, we didn't use it much at all. Part of the problem was that there wasn't enough room at the front of the house for the box and all the binbags - but it was also that we were never organised enough to sort our waste in the kitchen, and so most stuff ended up in the single bin.
Here in my new flat in Kentish Town, there's no green box collection, and all the rubbish from our small block of 8 flats goes into a big hinged bin outside. There is, however, collection bins for glass and paper at the end of the road.
So, I'm going to try and 'recycle more' this year, and I urge other Londoners to do so too. Use the handy postcode finder to find out information about local services.