Hongkongers who want to recycle rubbish often simply dump it because they cannot find any recycling facilities on the streets, a green group has found in a survey. Of the 1,000 people interviewed by Green Sense last month, 460 said they simply threw away unwanted materials when they could not find recycling bins nearby. The group said the government had not provided enough recycling bins on the streets. 'There are over 20,000 rubbish bins all over Hong Kong's streets, but only 858 recycling bins,' project manager Gabrielle Ho Ka-po said, quoting Food and Environmental Hygiene Department data. Most recycling bins were located near public conveniences and trash collection points, which were not convenient locations for most people, she said. She urged the government to follow Macau's example and introduce containers for collecting both non-recyclable and recyclable materials, to lighten the burden on landfills. Other helpful ideas, she said, were a waste-charging scheme, assistance to the recycling industry and promoting second-hand goods markets. Figures from the Environmental Protection Department show that 2.81 million tonnes - or 45 per cent of the city's total solid waste - was recovered for recycling last year, the same as in 2006. The rest was sent to landfills. Sixty-four per cent of people sorted their rubbish, the survey found. Apart from paper, plastic bottles and metal cans - which are government-designated recycling materials - many mentioned plastic bags: about 40 per cent of those polled said they separated the bags from other rubbish. Plastic bags and packaging are recyclable but - despite a government campaign to recycle plastic bags in some residential estates and supermarkets in 2002 - there are no longer any mechanisms or businesses that reprocess plastic bags. Ms Ho suggested the government support recycling firms and charge a levy on plastic bags. She also called for more efforts to recycle food waste, which takes up about 40 per cent, by weight, of domestic solid waste. 'It was a good initiative to recycle food waste with horse dung during the Olympic equestrian events. The government should keep it up and extend the plan to household kitchen waste,' Ms Ho said.