Win “Recycle: The essential guide”

Filed in Blog by on August 16, 2010 116 Comments
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Mrs Green enjoys her new book

Mrs Green enjoys her new book

I’ve been reading “Recycle: The Essential Guide” which has been launched as a second edition by Black Dog Publishing. The introduction is by the lovely Lucy Siegle, resident eco-expert at “The Observer” and the book is described as the “indispensable handbook to recycling today.”

It walks through the urgency of resource depletion as well as telling readers what they can do to reduce waste in their own home.

The book is huge with 220 pages of information about where household waste goes to, the impact of our rubbish around the world and sections on how to responsibly dispose of the main household materials and everyday products.

The six main materials covered are paper, glass, metal, plastic, household and office waste (E waste, batteries, hazardous waste) and compost. For each material you’ll learn what it is and how it is made, why it’s popular, problems with recycling it, the recycling process, what happens to it after recycling as well as advice on what you can do; so it’s really hands on.

There are several case studies throughout the book highlighting innovative initiatives and inspiring approaches to ethical living around the world.  You’ll see just how successful Ireland’s plastic bag tax has been, read about Freecycle, learn about TRAID and discover what Zurich thinks about the garbage it produces.

At the back of the book is an international directory of organisations and authorities involved in recycling processes, as well as consumer directory for eco-design. Here you’ll learn how to close the loop by purchasing recycled items; just in time for Christmas eh!?

The book is a comprehensive guide and would be ideal for beginners who want to reduce their waste but don’t know where to start. Let’s hope the third edition includes yours truly as a case study or maybe I could write the introduction 😉

Being the great people that they are, the publisher has offered 3 lucky people the chance to win a copy of the book. It retails at £19.99 which shows just how comprehensive this beauty is. All you have to do is leave a comment below.

For those of you who can’t wait to get your mitts on a copy, you my darlings, can get 40% off the cover price. You need to contact Jess [email protected] with your delivery address and quote ‘My Zero Waste Offer’ as the subject of your email. Jess will then place your order for you.

Have you read the book? What did you think of it?

About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (116)

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  1. John says:

    Hi Mrs Green

    We received our Owl Monitor today (wrapped in 2 types of plastic). But I can’t work out how to fix it to our mails supply; we don’t seem to have the red wire that the instructions tell us to wrap the sensor lead to. So, if we are amazingly fortunate to win this book, I am hoping there will be clearer instructions in its pages, as to how to fit an electricity monitor! Oh well I can but try. x

  2. KAREN DONALD says:

    Would love to win this!

  3. N Miller says:

    I’d love to get my hands on this book. I’m always on the look out for more recycling ideas.

  4. Ashleigh says:

    looks interesting, would like to win this!

  5. Justine says:


    What an interesting website. And the chance to win a book on recycling – hope its me. I would like some more ideas on recycling.

  6. Amelia Royle says:

    I’m green, but would love to be greener!

  7. Georgina Ball says:

    Sounds like a very useful book!

  8. Denice says:

    This would be great, would love to learn more about recycling.

  9. lee keith says:

    save the world one step at a time 🙂

  10. Alan Watson says:

    This book sounds so interesting – If the government are really serious about the environment perhaps they should be sending one to every houshold in the country.

  11. Alison says:

    I’d like to have this book as we are very into green things, but I’m sure there is still more that we could do.

  12. Debbie says:

    sounds like a very useful book – we could all do a little bit more to be greener.

  13. Catherine says:

    I think this is the type of book every household should have.

  14. Donna Denton says:

    I would love to the chance to read this book, always looking for different ways to save on waste

  15. Nicola Seary says:

    Am trying my best to recycle more all the time,this book would really help.

  16. John Tingay says:

    I would love a book that gives guidance beyond the supermarket recycling banks and the few items the council collects.

  17. Robyn Clarke says:

    Would love to read this, im an avid recycler and would love to know more

  18. Young Lee says:

    Just what we need in these thrifty but ecologically concious times.

  19. Eleanor Wigmore says:

    This book looks really interesting and important. I recycle but I’m sure I could do better.

  20. Joanne Torrance says:

    i must admit have gotten into recyling later than most people but i am converted. Want to make up for all the time i was “not green” looking for more idea’s so this would be fab..

  21. Alicia says:

    Not sure if this is open to US residents. If so, I’d love to win this book! Sounds like just the thing I could use to help me become a better eco-minded consumer!

  22. Stewart Herbert says:

    worth a browse?

  23. sarah foulds says:

    great looking book. would be good for tips!

  24. Jenny says:

    Would like this as recycling can get so confusing at times 🙂

  25. val young says:

    I would like this book I have got lazy of late and need a bit of incentive

  26. belinda hendry says:

    i must be honest and admit i dont recycle because i dont know what can be recycled, but if i win this then i would certanily start and get my family started sooo pleaseeee can i win one

  27. gemma henshaw says:

    would love more recycling ideas

  28. Simon says:

    Would Love a Win

  29. Csaba B says:

    I would like to read this book for new ideas as I would like to recycle more.

  30. Lucy Spencer says:

    Sounds like an awesome book – a great way to get into recycling that bit more!

  31. Valerie says:

    Oh, this would be a wonderful resource to spark discussion-and change-in my classroom!

  32. Natalie Wallace says:

    Think this would be a useful and good thing to win.

  33. Alec Rigby says:

    As a geography student, I am always interested in anything to do with reducing consumption and ensuring things are re-used. Any tips from this book would be amazing!

  34. Solange says:

    Looks like a great book

  35. steve thomas says:

    This would be a useful little book, always on the lookout for more ideas.

  36. Home research at fingertips: I need this guide to quote in my articles , and for my own edification…to use and share . It is a consumer’s duty to know the how, where and what-ever-after of products…

  37. To make recycling easier in our house, my husband built a basic vertical ladder type structure from reclaimed wood.
    Each “rung” was wide enough to place a recycling bin on. I have four shelves up to stack four bins and one on the floor below the first ‘rung”.
    It is hard to make room for all the recycling bins sometimes. That is a complaint we hear from people – but going vertical is usually a good option. Most of us have more vertical space than horizontal.
    We like to think outside the box and I think the book will give us more great ideas!
    I hope we win!!!
    thanks for the great website. I love to tweet your articles – such easy tips.

  38. caroline enstock says:

    I have a big family and we are getting better and better at recycling this summer – winning this book would give us more ideas and spur us on to greater things !

  39. Karen says:

    Sounds like just the book for our house. It would be lovely to be able to receive a copy. Thank you.

  40. Dawn says:

    We work hard at recycling and extra tips are always appreciated – the book looks like just the job. Small changes for lots of people can have a big effect.

  41. stuart hargreaves says:


  42. Matthew Popplewell says:

    great prize

  43. Steve Plater says:

    Hoping to start up a ” 3 Rs ” (reduce, re-use, recycle) action group locally. This would be a highly useful resource for informative talks, projects etc.

  44. shane weir says:

    i would love to win this book

  45. Gemma says:

    Looks like a great book. It would be good for me to have in my classroom as we do so many projects on ESDGC, but the school has no books! I usually have to print off information, which is a ridiculous thing to do, seeing as the whole idea is to educate children to reduce their impact on the planet!

  46. Michelle Pratt says:

    Would love to win this and become a more proficient recycler!

  47. Pamela Gossage says:

    I would love to win this as I am an avid recycler.From paper to making compost I’m there,

  48. sarah bailey says:

    sounds an extremelly helpful book, thanks for sharing

  49. Monica Goodliff says:

    Sounds good!

  50. Jayne Hyman says:

    I would definitely like to know more about recycling as I’m never quite sure if I’m separating my rubbish correctly, especially plastics

  51. JAMES HOLYLAND says:


  52. Phil Darling says:

    I’ve written this on recycled web pages just to prove how committed I am to recycling. Please enter me….

  53. bella smyth says:

    Recycle Recycle Recycle is the best 3 words there is

  54. Poppy says:

    Having just spent a wonderful day at The Eden Project soaking up the atmosphere of genuine care for the planet, I need something close at hand to keep refreshing my will and kick butt enthusiasm!

  55. Diane says:

    I would love to tackle the amount of waste our household produces, it’s hard knowing where to start though.

  56. peter arnold says:

    I love recycling..I bet this book has a whole load of ideas I’d never considered.

  57. Andrew D says:

    I like this book.

  58. Sounds like a great book. I still can’t believe how you managed to get through a year with so little waste, so realise there must be so much more I can do. Books like this will hopefully help us all to reach your extremely high standards.

  59. Jen D. says:

    Sounds like an informative book. I wonder if it itself was printed on recycled paper. I hope so!

  60. Lindsay W. says:

    Would be great to win this – I’d leave it lying around in the hope of finally persuading my Other Half that recycling is worthwhile!

  61. Heather Shaw says:

    I am trying to lead a greener life but it is hard! This book sure would help!

  62. katherine grieve says:

    Would love this book, am trying to be green

  63. Andrea says:

    would like to win!

  64. Laura W. says:

    I have added to my wishlist in case I don’t win.

  65. Mel Clarke says:

    Looks fab, I love recycling & I’d love to win a copy!! good luck everyone xx

  66. Brenda W says:

    This sounds like a great book, I will look for it!

  67. LJayne says:

    Would love to read this book. Am currently waiting to read “How bad are bananas”? and think it would complement it really well.

  68. Jane says:

    This book should show why one size doesn’t fit all and why we should take the initiative rather than just rely on the Council to do everything for us! We don’t want to pay more yet we want more and better services to suit us as and when we need them. While we can do things for ourselves we should!

  69. H0gg1t says:

    Working towards zero waste was my New Year’s resolution; have fallen a bit off the band wagon, so this book will refocus my mind and rekindle my enthusiasm. Fingers crossed!

  70. Dan Caldon says:

    What a fantastic book with guidance on how to reduce your lantdfill contribution

  71. Kate says:

    This sounds like a very interesting book. I really need to improve my recycling habits, hopefully this will give me some good ideas.

  72. Bethany Watson says:

    It might be a small contribution towards the reduction of waste but we empty the contents of the vacuum cleaner on our compost heap instead of in the wheelie bin!

  73. Poppy says:

    lol @ Bethany! I’ve just come back indoors from doing the exact same thing 🙂

  74. Jenny Price says:

    Looks a very interesting and useful guide.

  75. lynda sanderson says:

    I love to re-cycle …………feel that I’m doing my bit but ……………….. always listen to new ways !!!!!!!!!!!!
    A good book like this would be brill, I’ll read then pass on to my local library, for more to become experts.
    there should be a better system for recyling magazines, perhaps via the libraries.

  76. Delighted to have found this website which has a similar ethic to mine The book looks fantastic especially as it deals with the subject globally so that even ‘we colonials’ in Australia can jump in and be responsible citizens of the world. Would love a copy all for myself!

  77. Victoria Boland says:

    I would love to win this. Please enter me in the draw.

  78. Mike says:

    I would like this book as I have got lazy of late and need a bit of an incentive to step it up

  79. Gilla says:

    Please enter me into the draw. This would make a very good present for someone I know!

  80. linda wiles says:

    This really could give me the inspiration I need

  81. Karen says:

    Always willing to learn more on green issues, would be very useful. Thanks

  82. JULIE PANNELL says:

    would love to win this book. just go into recycling so need as much info as possible

  83. CLARE says:


  84. Joanne thomas says:

    would love to win this book for a little more inspiration, we grow our own veg and have wormery, compost heaps, etc i try to be good but would love to be better!!

  85. Mary says:

    always read Lucy Siegle in the Observer, so would love to read this book.

  86. A great book, would live to win it!

  87. Samantha says:

    Would love to win the book as I’m always looking for new ways to convince my husband to recycle!

  88. victoria haynes says:


  89. Dee Heath says:

    Have followed your blog from the start and would be interested to read this, absorb and then pass on (recycle) to others treading the same path

  90. Heather Knotts says:

    Would love to win this book. I’m trying to be as green as I can but would love some new hints and tips as I’m sure I could be doing more.

  91. Marita says:

    looks like a fab book

  92. Hugh O'Connor says:

    To deduce waste and save the high cost of replacing razor blades I invested in a blade sharpener. Instead of having to use a new blade every few days the razorpit keeps the blade sharp for at least 8 weeks!

  93. karen s says:

    would love to win!

  94. M.Salo says:

    Would love to win this book!

  95. JO JONES says:

    Always on the look out for new tips on recycling so it would be great to win the book.

  96. Julie says:

    love to win this

  97. Rachel Fenney says:

    I do need to recycle more, but i don’t know where to start and i’m not sure i have the room to store it all…help needed !!!

  98. Cathy MacLennan says:

    I recycle as much as I can but need some new ideas.

  99. Lora says:

    It sounds like a really interesting read. We already recycle everything we can where council facilities are available, but it would be great to find ways of recycling the things we can’t.

  100. Julie P says:

    It’s so simple i want to know more, we all need to do more!!

  101. MJ says:

    good book, thanks

  102. Rory Campion says:

    Would be useful to encourage the rest of the family to do more.

  103. Elaine Taylor says:

    Love to win this. It would be a real encouragement.

  104. Claire Hill says:

    How useful this would be!!

  105. HAZEL G says:


  106. Caroline Maffia says:

    Sounds interesting. Spent a couple of months working in Zambia where they recycle everything. We’re such a throwaway society in comparison

  107. Misty says:

    Would be interesting to find out just how much more we could actually recycle 🙂

  108. Amanda says:

    Would love to win this and see if I can help turn the UK into a green country 🙂

  109. Chin says:

    I’m like fighting a 1-man battle with the rest of the family who thinks I’m a litter bug because I’m saving all the used food and beverages containers to be given away to recycling organisations. They also think that I’m wasting time and water rinsing all the tetrapaks and juice bottles when they are going to land in recycling dumps anyway. Have had endless argument with my loved ones. They’re telling me that I’m being all the more unenvironmental by cluttering the home with all the used items that can be thrown away so conveniently. I’m beginning to wonder if I’m doing the right thing all these time? Is it really necessary to rinse all the used f&b containers before giving them away to recycling centres? Japanese food takeaway usually comes with multi-layers of packaging. Which part(s) of them can be recycled? I roughly know what to do with old shirts and pants, but what about old under garments, especially items like brassieres? Still keeping many of the old and worn out undergarments because I don’t know if it’s proper to just throw them away. Please help provide solutions. Thanks.
    And yes, the book will be a good arbitrator for all the argument about the right way to recycle stuff.

  110. Chas Gilbert says:

    Thank you for the competition.

  111. Alison T says:

    This looks brilliant I recycle as much as I can and would be helpful to know more ways to become greener.

  112. Lucy Taylor says:

    great prize – always looking for new ways to be green!

  113. Jennifer Thorpe says:

    this book sounds briliant! please include me in the draw

  114. Dan says:

    It’s great to give people an accessible avenue to really understand the whole process and keep them engaged in it. When we don’t think about where stuff comes from, what the true costs are, and what happens to it we are able to distance ourselves, justify more, and as a result cause harm.

    I do, in general, have some issues with the huge focus in “environmentalism” on “the third R”… I would like to see more focus on the first two. The general public likes to think themselves virtuous because although they buy over packaged, or disposable items, they recycle… The real focus needs to be on not just recycling but reducing the amount of resources we use and making sure we purchase items that last, and are adaptable, and only as a last resort, when unavoidable, recycle those things that can no longer be used.

    But hey, I’m preaching to the choir here…

  115. Daphne says:

    Excellent book, will give me lots more ideas for recycling. Already do composting, and recycle bottles, paper, card and plastics

  116. Eric says:

    It’s great to find a resource like this for recycling. So many things can be recycled in ways many of us know nothing about, and this book goes a long way to “get the message to Garcia”!

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