Climate change: Can recycling really help?

Video report by ITV News Science Correspondent Alok Jha

Around 87 per cent of people in the UK believe recycling is one of the best ways to help save the environment, an ITV News poll has found.

Ahead of next week's climate change summit in Paris, ITV News went behind the scenes at a recycling plant to see what happens to rubbish after it has been separated out.

Once taken away, the recycling is taken to a sorting plant, which uses high-tech machinery to separate the different kinds of rubbish out, with a laser to scan what it is made of.

The plant can then extract materials from the recycled goods and use them in the manufacture of new products.

Not only does this mean less has to be dug out from the ground, but it also uses less energy in the process.

In the survey, people also rated more tree-planting, an increased use of renewable energy and reducing the use of cars as some of the mose effective methods of tackling global warming.

'Effective' ratings

  • 88% - Planting more trees

  • 87% - Recycling

  • 85% - Increasing use of renewable energy

  • 85% - Improving housing insulation

  • 76% - Reducing use of cars

  • 75% - Using energy saving lightbulbs

  • 73% - Reducing the use of coal

  • 72% - Having reusable carrier bags

  • 70% - Paperless bills

  • 68% - Cycling more