Let’s mend things, not throw them out, says EU

What a waste: The UK creates 100 million tonnes of rubbish every year.

Should we learn to repair things instead of throwing them away? The UK bins millions of broken items each year. Some people say we should learn to fix them instead.

What’s happening

Have you ever got a new toy or T-shirt which breaks after just a few days? It is a very frustrating feeling!

Now Europe is making a new law which forces companies to create products which are easy to mend.

Find out more

Almost 22 million pieces of furniture, 11,000 bicycles and 28 million toys are binned each year when they become damaged.

Only one in 10 people in the UK try to fix their broken things.

This matters because throwing things away is bad for the planet. If they are not recycled they end up in landfills.

The replacements for the broken things use up more energy and resources.

Is it time we all learnt to fix things?

Some say…

Yes. Everyone should know how to sew on a button or use a screwdriver. Fixing things is fun, and it makes them feel special.

Others think…

Why bother when buying a new version is easier? There are other more important skills to learn, like maths and reading.

You Decide

  1. Should repair skills be taught in school?

Activities

  1. Think about the last thing you threw away. Could it have been fixed? If so, how? Discuss with someone sitting next to you.

Some People Say...

“The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.”

Robert Swan

What do you think?

Word Watch

Products
Items for sale.
Damaged
Broken.
Recycled
Turned into something new.
Landfills
Holes where waste is buried.
Replacements
Things which replace something else.
Energy
Power, including electricity.
Resources
Useful materials, such as water, wood or coal.

Subjects

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