Earth Day: Giant rainbow can installation appears at Grey’s Monument in Newcastle

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The installation has travelled around the country and is in Newcastle until Sunday

A giant rainbow installation has appeared at Grey's Monument in Newcastle today to mark Earth Day.

The global day of action takes place on Friday, April 22 and seeks to bring about positive change for the planet.

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An arch measuring four metres high and seven metres wide has been set up in the heart of Newcastle.

The feature is made out of over 2,500 recycled drink cans and sits in the shadow of Grey's Monument.

The feature was installed by not-for-profit Every Can Counts in collaboration with Newcastle City Council to bring awareness to the importance of can recycling.

It will be in place until Sunday evening and Geordies are invited to pose for a photo with the rainbow and share it on social media to be in with a chance of winning £100 worth of shopping vouchers.

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According to Every Can Counts’ research, Geordies drink an average of six cans a week, of which people say they recycle around 70% of empty cans.

Even though nine in 10 Geordies surveyed say that they understand the benefits of recycling, more than a quarter admit that they don’t recycle while out of the house.

Not only this, but 68% of people in Newcastle say they are more concerned about the environment and their impact on it than they were this time last year.

Residents suggest that more recyclable packaging and monetary incentives such as the planned deposit return scheme would encourage them to recycle more.

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The installation is made from recycled cansThe installation is made from recycled cans
The installation is made from recycled cans | -

Chris Latham-Warde, Programme Manager for Every Can Counts, said: "Our rainbow installation has toured all over the UK and we’re so excited that it’s finally making its debut in Newcastle for Earth Day.

"This year, the theme is ‘Invest in our Planet’, and that message has never been so important.

“Each and every one of us can make a difference and recycling our empty drink cans is an example of a small habit we can all adopt that has a positive impact on the environment.

"All of the cans collected in Newcastle over the weekend could be recycled and refilled on shop shelves in just 60 days – and because every can is infinitely recyclable, the benefits of keeping that valuable aluminium in circulation keep adding up again and again!

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“Recycling rates were at an all-time high during the national lockdowns and, now that restrictions have been lifted, it’s essential that we keep up the momentum. We hope our colourful rainbow pop-up this weekend will inspire the people of Newcastle to do just that!”

Christine Herriot, Newcastle City Council’s director of operations and regulatory services, added: “It’s fantastic to have this eye-catching rainbow art installation in the heart of our city this weekend, which will certainly get people talking and help spread the message about the importance of recycling.

“We know residents take great pride in having a clean and tidy city, which was demonstrated by the incredible turn out for the Great British Spring Clean.

“We thank all of the volunteers, businesses and community groups who played their part in helping us to tidy up their communities and it shows what we can achieve for our environment when we work together.

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“It’s important everyone continues to take responsibility and dispose of their empty packaging properly. If there is not a public bin nearby, or you arrive at a bin that is already full, please take your litter home and recycle it there instead.

“We hope everyone enjoys having their pictures taken with this brilliant piece of artwork this weekend and remembers the important message behind it.”

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