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IELTS Writing Task 2: recycling


IELTS Writing Task 2: recycling

Here’s an example of Agree or disagree essay

Some people claim that not enough of the waste from homes is recycled. They say that the only way to increase recycling is for governments to make it a legal requirement.
To what extent do you think laws are needed to make people recycle more of their waste?


  • waste = garbage
  • household waste
  • new legislation
  • a strict regulation
  • just one possible way to tackle the problem
  • inconvenience of household garbage collection
  • a legal obligation
  • householders
  • fail to adhere to this law
  • prison sentences for repeat offenders
  • to regulate recycling laws
  • act as a deterrent
  • encourage people to obey
  • improved behaviour of homeowners
  • a clean, waste-free environment
  • put education at the centre of a recycling campaign
  • the environmental impact of household waste
  • tactic that governments could use
  • create stricter regulations
  • packaging for household products
  • to tackle the waste problem
  • recycling facilities and systems
  • waste is processed more effectively
  • dispose of waste more responsibly

There is more extended vocabulary to describe environmental issues, check it. 

Model answer

It is true that we do not recycle enough of our household waste. Although I accept that new legislation to force people to recycle could help this situation, I do not agree that a recycling law is the only measure that governments should take.

In my view, a new recycling law would be just one possible way to tackle the waste problem. Governments could make it a legal obligation for householders to separate all waste into different bins. There could be punishments for people who fail to adhere to this law, ranging from a small fine to community service, or even perhaps prison sentences for repeat offenders. These measures would act as a deterrent and encourage people to obey the recycling law. As a result, the improved behaviour of homeowners could lead to a clean, waste-free environment for everyone.

However, I believe that governments should do more than simply introduce a recycling law. It might be more effective if politicians put education, rather than punishment, at the centre of a recycling campaign. For example, children could be taught about recycling in schools, and homeowners could be informed about the environmental impact of household waste. Another tactic that governments could use would be to create stricter regulations for the companies that produce the packaging for household products. Finally, money could also be spent to improve recycling facilities and systems, so that waste is processed more effectively, regardless of whether or not people separate it correctly in the home.

In conclusion, perhaps we do need to make recycling mandatory, but this would certainly be other alternative ways to encourage people to dispose of their waste more responsibly.

(275 words, band 9)


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