The aim of the event is to demonstrate the amount of recyclable litter, in particular drinks cans & bottles which are discarded on the streets of Islington before & after large public events. This 'rubbish' currently ends up in landfill. Jon Nott, the Green Party's shadow councillor for Highbury West, said
"Local residents in Highbury West have been pressing the council for years to put in recycling bins around the Arsenal on match days. The Council have said there is not enough space - but we can't understand this given that they do find space for all the stalls selling food and merchandise. It is shameful that the rubbish from Arsenal matches - almost all of which is recyclable - is ending up in landfill."
Participants will spend an hour walking around streets, picking up cans and bottles that have been dropped by football fans on their way to the afternoon match against Liverpool and will be handing out leaflets to the general public to highlight that a lot of litter that people simply throw away is a valuable resource that we should ensure is recycled, not discarded in the street, and not binned because it may end up in landfill.
Katie Dawson, local resident and Green party activist said
"I live very near the Arsenal stadium and on match days there are bottles and cans lined up all along my front wall. It would be so much easier and safer if the Council gave us bottle and can banks so that fans could dispose of these properly.
"Throwing these things away is a terrible waste of natural resources and energy, contributing to the worrying problem of climate change. Like many Londoners I am very concerned about the effects climate change will have on our city, particularly in terms of the risk of flooding. And as a mum, I worry about the effect climate change will have on my children and future generations."
It takes 20 times more energy to produce a new can from mined rather than recycled aluminum but in the UK, 160,000 tonnes of aluminum are sent to landfills every year. Recycling 1 kg of aluminum saves 8 kg of bauxite, 4 kg of chemical products and 14 Kilowatt hours of electricity (1). Cally Time Bank and Islington FoE have collected 450 cans (almost 7 kilograms) of cans during the last two recycle pick events and thus saved over 50 kg of bauxite, and almost 100 Kilowatt hours of electricity.
The lack of on-street recycling facilities is a problem every day, not just on match days, Jon Nott added:
"Councils in other London boroughs have recycling bins alongside litter bins on all the main streets, making it easy to do the right thing and recycle paper and cardboard, glass, cans and plastic bottles. We call on Islington Council to do the right thing and give us the on-street facilities we need."