Families in Kirklees are among the worst in the country at recycling their rubbish.
As the Christmas gift wrap and packaging gets consigned to the bin, official figures show that the average Kirklees family recycled just 28.5% of its household waste last year.
That is well below the 46.3% for the average family in neighbouring Calderdale and the national average of 43%. The worst area for recycling in the country was the London borough of Newham, which recycled 4.7% of its household waste.
The low recycling rate for Kirklees has previously been blamed on mixed waste recycling which means paper, tins and plastics all end up in one green bin rather than in separate containers – increasing the likelihood of contamination and waste intended for recycling being rejected.
Data from the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs shows that the average Kirklees family generates a pile of non-recyclable rubbish weighing 681.1kg every year – the weight of a large horse. While that figure was among the highest in the UK, households in parts of east London generated nearly a tonne of waste – the same weight as a walrus.
On average, across England, the average family created 564kg of non-recycled waste. That is a total of 13.4m tonnes - the same weight as 77,000 of the heaviest blue whales ever measured.