The Big Plastic Count: Join the UK's Crusade Against Plastic Waste

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The Big Plastic Count logo

Graphic for the Big Plastic Count Campaign 2024 in UK. ©  Who Wot Why / Greenpeace

Diving into The Big Plastic Count feels like joining a nationwide detective mission, but instead of solving a mystery, we're tackling the UK's plastic problem head-on. It's an initiative where we all get a bit Sherlock about our plastic use for a week, aiming to uncover the real scale of waste we're dealing with.

It's not just about being nosy; it's about gathering the evidence we need to push for change. So, if you're keen to make a difference (or just a bit curious about your plastic footprint), this is your chance to join the biggest plastic investigation the UK has ever seen.

What is The Big Plastic Count?

The Big Plastic Count is all about giving us a clearer picture of our plastic usage, highlighting the journey from our homes to potentially impacting national policies on plastic waste. It's a call to action for individuals, families, and organisations to track their plastic consumption for one week.

This initiative isn't just about counting; it's a powerful step towards understanding our environmental footprint and driving real, tangible change. By participating, we're not only contributing valuable data but also joining a larger conversation on reducing plastic waste and influencing positive environmental policies.

How to Participate

A father and son sorting recycling in a kitchen

Participating in The Big Plastic Count is straightforward and impactful. Here's a quick rundown:

  1. Sign Up: Head to The Big Plastic Count website to sign up. You'll receive all the information and materials needed, either digitally or by post.
  2. Prepare to Count: Get ready to track your plastic usage. You'll be using a tally sheet to note down every piece of plastic waste you encounter over a week.
  3. Count Your Plastic: For one week, keep a close eye on all the plastic items you use and throw away. This includes everything from food packaging to shampoo bottles.
  4. Submit Your Results: Once the week is over, you'll submit your findings through the website. Your contribution is crucial for building a nationwide picture of plastic use.
  5. Exclusions: It's worth noting that there are certain items you won't need to count, focusing the effort on the most common types of household plastic waste.

Importance of The Big Plastic Count

A waste dump with plastic waste in Turkey

Waste dump at Karahan Kuyumcular, a village in the district of Seyhan, Adana Province, seen during an investigation into plastic waste that is dumped and burned in Turkey. The team found plastic packaging from UK, German and global food and drinks brands and supermarkets. © Caner GUEVERA / Greenpeace

The data collected from The Big Plastic Count isn't just numbers - it's a powerful tool for change. By understanding our collective plastic use, we can push for better recycling systems, less unnecessary plastic in products, and policies that protect our environment for future generations.

This initiative gives us the evidence needed to advocate for a world with less plastic pollution, highlighting the role each of us plays in achieving this goal. It's about taking small, individual actions that together create a significant impact of the amount of plastic produced.

After the Count

After the count, participants receive insights into their personal plastic footprint along with practical tips for reducing plastic waste. This information not only empowers individuals to make more sustainable choices but also contributes to a larger, national conversation on reducing plastic pollution. The collective data helps to shape policies and practices, aiming for a future where plastic use is significantly minimised.

Call to Action Count

This is your moment to step up and be part of a meaningful movement. The Big Plastic Count offers a unique opportunity to not only understand our personal impact on the environment but also to be part of a larger effort that could drive significant environmental change and used to persuade the UK government to change legislation to reduce plastic waste, and influence The Global Plastics Treaty being actioned by the United Nations.

Sign up, spread the word, and let's tackle plastic pollution together. Your participation could help shape a future where we all live more sustainably.

Sign-up today: