A FEW FACTS
400 MILLION METRES - The amount of line discarded per annum if 2 million UK anglers only re-spools 2 reels with 200m of monofilament line once a year. That’s enough to get to the Moon!
600 YEARS - The amount of time it takes for heavy monofilament to degrade in a landfill.
LANDFILL OR INCINERATION - Currently the only options for the disposal of used line.
RUBBISH or RESOURCE - Nylon fishing line IS a valuable commodity for recycling.
THREAT - Discarded line poses a threat to wildlife and the image of the angling sector
NOW there IS a recycling destination for the fishing line with the Angler’s NLRS
Recycling is part of all our daily lives and the benefits of preventing line ending up in landfill or being incinerated are obvious. As anglers, we treasure the environments that we fish in and the wildlife found around them, so line recycling demonstrates the
responsibility of the angling community towards the issue of unwanted or lost line to the public.
HOW DID THE SCHEME START?
The original scheme was the first line recycling project of its kind in the UK, founded in 2016 by a volunteer lead organisation, Local Independent Sea Anglers (LISA) and involved a few tackle shops in Sussex. LISA, working in conjunction with Global Ghost Gear Initiative, had identified a viable route for fishing line to be recycled. After the positive success of the local collections it became apparent that anglers, far and wide, along with the tackle industry were keen to get involved.
To develop the scheme further it was decided that a clear 'national identity' which covered all angling disciplines, was needed and the scheme slogan of “Something the whole of angling can agree on” was born. LISA members launched the Anglers National Line Recycling Scheme (ANLRS) in early 2018. It remains a joint LISA/GGGI project which is run on the same, purely voluntary basis. Funding the scheme comes via donations from anglers, tackle shops, fisheries and manufacturers. The ANLRS is also exploring funding routes through government and environmental organisations.
Within the first year of being launched over 200 tackle shops have signed up to the ANLRS along with over 50 fisheries, angling clubs, charter boats and some manufacturers have pledged their on-going support. Since its launch the scheme is also working with the Environment Agency and the Angling Trust to investigate collaborative projects that will expand the scheme and its impact.
Recently the scheme has been approached by organisations outside of angling that carry out beach cleans and litter collecting events around waterways to help with disposal of angling related litter and working partnerships are being developed to do this. A recent partnership was formed with the Torbay Cleaner Coasts Initiative to work together to ensure marine waste plastics and fishing lines they recover are recycled properly through the scheme. Yet again the scheme is reaching out beyond angling!
The team behind the ANLRS hope to make it at least cost neutral but if any excess money is generated from the recycling then it will be put into projects that benefit anglers, angling and the environment. The scheme is built from the grass roots upwards and every one of us can have an input into making angling that little bit greener.
As the scheme has grown massively in its first year and is now looking at securing government agency and private funding soon, the decision was taken to create a Community Interest Limited Company. This is essential as grants and funding are often only
awarded to registered schemes with fully audited accounts.
HOW CAN WE COLLECT FISHING LINE FOR RECYCLING?
The scheme plans to achieve this in several ways;
• Recycling Bins - tackle shops have a bin where anglers can deposit waste line
• Recycling Points - placed at fishing venues so anglers can deposit waste line whilst fishing
• Posted Returns – anglers return line via a pre-printed envelope, distributed with new line sales
WHAT CAN BE RECYCLED & WHAT HAPPENS TO IT?
There are many forms of lines used in angling disciplines and after discussing these with the recycling companies we can currently recycle the following;
Braided lines / Fly backing
The scheme has engaged with specialist recyclers in Europe and the UK to enable the recycling of the lines collected.
Once returned to us, the line is sent off to selected recycling plants where it is processed into a form that can then be used to manufacture various products such a traffic cones, sun glasses, skateboards, wetsuits and even swimwear. It is our aim to get the recycled material to be used in the production of angling related products and the target is to achieve this by 2020.
In what has become a natural step after various conversations with angler and the industry, the ANLRS is currently working on expanding the project to include the recycling of line spools, single use plastics and even mixed beach clean plastics.