Asked by: Caroline Smith, London
In the UK, estimates typically range from six to eight years. But local authorities have been saying this since at least 2010 and we aren’t there yet. This is because EU directives have steadily increased the landfill tax, so councils have been driven to recycle more and more of their waste. In 2009, 90 per cent of our rubbish went to landfill. It’s less than 50 per cent now and forecast to drop to 10 per cent by 2020.