Much less waste in a circular economy

In a carbon neutral Portsmouth consumption would be reduced and waste materials would be reused or recycled.

Portsmouth now

  • 304th
    Out of 343 local authorities for the least amount of residual household waste

    595kg per household being produced in 2018 to 2019, over double the amount of 1st place (East Devon).

  • 4,394
    Tonnes of CO2e produced annually from municipal waste in Portsmouth
  • 26%
    The Portsmouth City Council recycling rate in 2020

    This is compared to a national average of 43%.

Portsmouth transformed

A circular economy emphasizes reduce-reuse-recycle, rather than take-make-waste. Here’s a few examples of what other places are trying:

Supporting SMEs to go green

Our manufacturing model typically turns raw materials into products that are used then thrown away. Circular economies instead keep the value of goods high as long as possible. SMEs are finding this is good for business. Read more

Tackling single-use packaging

Of the 78 million tons of plastic produced worldwide every year, only 14 % is recycled. Likewise, glass and aluminium are recyclable many times yet much is thrown away, wasting most of the energy needed to make it. Read more

Diverting waste from landfill

Landfill sites hold materials that can be hazardous to health. In West Sussex they are seeing the benefits of screening, scrubbing, chemically treating and classifying 50,000 tonnes of street cleansing residues per year. Read more

Sustainable construction

6% of the UK’s carbon emissions come from construction and 20% from heat and power for those buildings. The only way Portsmouth’s carbon neutrality target can be met is by building all its new homes sustainably. Read more

Creating a ‘sharing economy’

A well-regulated sharing economy can reduce consumption and carbon emissions. And create cultural change by shifting consumer expectations from ownership to demand-fulfillment, as they are doing in Seoul. Read more

Using procurement as a lever of change

For many organisations, procurement is the main source of their emissions. This provides opportunities: to reduce waste and inefficiencies in purchasing and to influence firms in their supply chain to become greener. Read more

What you can do

  1. Fix it!

    Offer your skills to Portsmouth’s own Repair Café or just pop along and get something fixed.

    Also, if your laptop or PC isn't working don't chuck it away: get it mended very cheaply or upcycled at the Landport Repair cafe (open every Tuesday to Friday 10am to 2pm). Click here for their email.

  2. Buy pre-loved clothes

    Buying new clothes, and fast fashion in particular, is a major source of environmental destruction.

    For vintage and pre-loved alternatives check out websites / apps like Vinted, DePop, ThriftPlus, Thrifted and many more. Or the many charity shops in Southsea and North End.

  3. Buy refurbished or remanufactured tech

    The manufacture of laptops, tablets and smartphones has a destructive impact on the natural world. Instead of buying new, look into purchasing remanufactured or refurbished devices, which are significantly cheaper and have a much lower carbon footprint. Sites like Backmarket are a B Corp and offer a student discount.

  4. Reduce packaging waste

    Join Portsmouth’s Zero Waste Community and bring your own containers / bags to buy stuff at our city’s many zero waste friendly shops.

    One shop in particular is completely dedicated to reducing waste: Southsea's Package Free Larder

  5. Learn to repair your clothes, curtains etc.

    Southsea Sustainable Textiles is a volunteer group that seeks to give people the skills and confidence to repair, adjust and re-design their curtains, clothes, hats, bags etc. The sessions are free to attend: email the team or call the founder, Claire, on 07814864973

  6. Get composting

    Up to 40% of our household refuse is food waste, which produces methane when it rots in landfill: a gas with 25 times the warming potential of CO2. One way to tackle this is to compost your vegetable scraps and garden cuttings or even your food waste.

  7. Share unwanted food via the OLIO app

    OLIO is a smartphone app that connects neighbours with each other and with local businesses so surplus food can be shared, rather than thrown away. It is very easy to use and is a good way to pass on extra portions, or groceries that would go to waste.

  8. Use Too Good To Go

    If you are a business with regular food waste try registering with the Too Good To Go app. Any surplus food is placed into Magic Bags, which are listed on the app for sale at a third of the product cost. It has been shown that 76% of Magic Bag buyers return as full paying customers.

  9. Community sharing

    Wimbledon Park Patch is a fantastic hyper-local Facebook group where people ask for stuff they need and share what they no longer want (clothes, furniture, toys etc). Set up in 2012 by one resident it now has over 830 members, exchanging regularly. Why not set up one where you live?

  10. Sign up to WARP IT

    WARP IT is a resource redistribution website, that stocks everything from furniture to café equipment to laboratory supplies to tools and machinery.

    It's free for schools and charities to use, and for businesses they guarantee at least 5 times ROI in the first year. Read here for details of how it helps save staff time, procurement, storage and disposal costs, as well as carbon.

  11. Buy used books, furniture etc.

    For used books check out World of Books, Hive and many others on this list. There are also a couple of 2nd hand book shops on Albert Road.

    For furniture, kitchen and domestic items check out online sites such as Facebook Marketplace and eBay. For 2nd hand furniture shops try Debra in Elm Grove & Sue Ryder near Fratton Park, and for kitchenware try Cry charity shop in Osborne Road.