WASTE AWAY: Where do soft plastics in our recycling bin end up?
54 Backers raised €1180 of €1180

Soft plastics can now be placed in Irish recycling bins following a change in policy in September 2021. But how much of this actually ends up being recycled on our island?

Latest statistics show that 84% or almost one million tonnes of our packaging waste is destined for export, the vast majority of which ended up in China prior to it banning most European recycling waste in 2018.

Irish researchers recently found that nearly a third of plastic exported from Ireland and other EU countries isn’t recycled at all and is ending up in seas in south-east Asia.

So, where are our soft plastics going and are they being recycled in a sustainable fashion?


We want to examine what change occurred to allow the collection of soft plastics in recycling bins across Ireland.

We will also investigate where these soft plastics are ending up, if they are being shipped abroad and what is happening to them once they reach their destination.

With the EU set on a new Circular Economy model where waste is a thing of the past, we will speak to experts on what needs to happen in Ireland to reduce exports and kick start a sustainable industry.

If you want to make a contribution to help this investigation happen, click the 'Fund This Proposal' button. Noteworthy investigations are sourced from and crowdfunded by the public.

You can contact us at and find out how we work here.

54 Backers raised €1180 of €1180
Other Proposals
   Search for Proposals