Drink bottles to be recycled at Olympics

Posted on November 29, 2011 by DrRossH in Plastic Waste News

Coca-Cola has pledged to recycle all clear plastic bottles disposed of at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The company will be joining forces with Sita UK, the Games organising committee’s waste management partner, to recycle clear plastic PET bottles from the Olympic Park, including those not made by the soft drinks giant but brought to the venue by visitors.  Full Story

While this attitude that Coke is trying to push out of being environmentally responsible is nice it is still irresponsible.   Their plastic bottles are such a large pollution problem.   Their products are found as litter everywhere.  Their attitude of recycling as the best means of controlling this is simply a stalling practice for them to continue their production practices with no responsibility of their consequences.   If their ideas held any merit why has it not succeeded already?  The only plan that works reasonably well is to put in place is a container deposit scheme.  Localities that have put these in place enjoy recycle rates over 80% where as they are about 25% without a CDS.  Why do the bottle companies not understand that every time one of their products is seen as litter on the ground, it is a negative advertisement of their company.  If instead they came out with a marketing campaign to clean up litter their products cause and help preserve the environment, then they would win support from consumers.  So rather than alienating people as they are now with their current sales at all costs attitudes, they would win favour from consumers and loyalty would push sales up.
As for plastic water bottles this is such a generated demand product that the public has fallen for.   The pollution from plastic water bottles is unacceptable.  If we banned any water bottle smaller than 2 litters, it doesn’t stop the public from buying bottle water, it would just reduce plastic water pollution by 80% with that one simple move. 
The public need to be made aware of just what a huge polluter the company really it.  Their claims of a an environmentally bottle are not quite so accurate.   That bottle doesn’t break down any different to the non plant bottle.  In a landfill or as litter, those bottles will still last 100s of years.  How does a plastic item that serves a use of just a few minutes in use, justify remaining as pollution for 100’s of years.

There are so many conflicting stories coming out of bottling companies like Coke.
Why has it taken till 2012 for them to come forward and actively take part in recycling?   They have been making pollution with their plastic bottles for many years.
What happens after the Olympics during which the concentration of discarded bottles will be high drops back to normal.   Will they still actively push for getting bottles recycled or will they go back to their old rhetoric ways only and be happy to see littered bottles on the streets again?
Why does Coke internationally fight bottle container deposit schemes that result in recycling rates of over 80% without Coke having to go out and try to collect them themselves?
Putting the recycling bins around the city is good and they ought to be congratulated for that.  They should support that with an advertising campaign to educate consumers to take note of the bins and what it means when consumers do recycle their bottles.  That would be a big help and at the same time win a lot of praise for Coke to be seen to be doing this.
The plant bottle has little environmental benefit at all.  It helps Coke wean themselves of petroleum reliance.  But as far as bottle disposal issues go, the plant bottle is just as bad for the environment as a normal PET bottle is.   Coke tries to tell us a bottle made with plant matter is better for the environment but it is fallacy in reality.