TAKE A LOOK AT THESE STATISTICS:
Australia is one of the most wasteful countries in the developed world
Every year the waste we generate is growing at twice the rate of our population
Australia uses over 10 million plastic bags a day – plastic bags are causing huge problems in our oceans
85% of soft plastics from bags and packaging ends up in landfill
Australia pioneered recycling programs in the 60s starting initiatives such as Clean Up Australia Day
The average Australian family throws out over $3.5k worth of food every year – that’s about a tonne!
Australia produces enough food each year to feed around 60 million people (over twice our population), yet many Australians struggle to put food on the table.
3.3 million tonnes of food waste produced every year, 2.6 million of that from households. This is enough to fill the MCG 6 times!
Approximately 1/5th of bought food is thrown away – one in every five shopping bags!
On average 1/3 of household rubbish is food waste
When food rots in landfill it lets off methane, which is 25 times more potent than the C02 produced by cars
If 1% of the population composted food scraps instead of throwing them in the bin, it would save 45 million kgs of CO2
Australians eat 5 million bananas a day, making it the number 1 selling supermarket product. A large percentage of bananas don’t reach the shelves.
Australian supermarkets and other retailers send approximately 170k tonnes of food to landfill each year
If global food waste was a country, it would be the third largest green house gas emitter behind China and the US SOURCE: THE WAR ON WASTE
LATEST NEWS ON PLASTICS’ WASTE IN AUSTRALIA
On May 18 The Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) launched the ANZPAC Plastic Pact, a collaborative collaborative solution that brings together key players behind a shared vision of a circular economy for plastic, where plastic never becomes waste or pollution. It aims to share knowledge, investment and industry led innovation to implement solutions tailored to Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands region.
Boomerang Alliance doesn't see this Plastic Pact as a major step in tackling the plastic waste crisis. With only 13% of plastic packaging being actually recycled and just 4% with recycled content – there are some very big challenges ahead.
They don’t believe the voluntary arrangements of the Plastic Pact and Packaging Covenant are sufficient and they are releasing Plan B based on making the 2025 Pact and National Packaging targets mandatory in Australia.
To read more:
Plastic Pact - Don’t Get Too Excited. Plan B Released.
“With just a few years to 2025, we can't waste time on case studies, pilots, workshops and more roadmaps. Our report, 'What’s the Plan B for Packaging?' sets out the key benchmarks for when mandatory action should be taken by governments. Our position is that if all necessary measures are not in place by mid-2022 and an independent review reporting by then is not confident all the targets can be met by 2025 - then all targets should be mandated, by the start of 2023. This gives three years to achieve the targets - that is change product design and content; invest in new processing; and place on the market.
Radio Interview: Listen to ABC NewsRadio's Thomas Oriti who spoke to the Director of the Boomerang Alliance Jeff Angel, about their critique of the agreement: https://www.boomerangalliance.org.au/abc_news_radio_plastic_pact_does_not_go_far_enough
RECYCLING QUIZ - originally published in The Yea Chronicle.
CHECK OUT THESE QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS TO SEE HOW YOU WOULD FARE:
1. Are McDonalds’ cups recyclable?
No. The cups are made from liquid paper with a low amount of plastic in the cup. It’s not worth the time to re-process at the moment.
2. Are milk cartons recyclable?
Not at the moment as they’re made from liquid paper, but this may change in the future so keep putting them in the recycle bin. They are currently sorted and then used as thermal mass to offset fossil fuels.
3. Can batteries be put into your recycling bin?
No, as they can start fires in the truck or processing facility. They can be recycled by dropping off at council disposal depots of at Officeworks or Aldi.
4. Which item is the hardest to separate out in the recycling process?
5. Can shredded paper be recycled?
No, it ends up as paper dust and damages the machinery. Put it in your compost bin and consider using a black marker to cross out any important details instead of shredding the paper.
6. Can heat-activated receipts be recycled? (These receipts are the ones that turn black when left in the sun.)
No, it contaminates the paper being sorted.
7. Should you crush aluminium cans before putting them into the recycle bin?
No, the machines are designed for the standard aluminium can shape and size.
8. Should you do anything special with aluminium foil or trays before putting them into the recycle bin?
Yes, roll it into a ball as then it doesn’t resemble paper.
9. Can you recycle aluminium containers lined with paint or plastic?
Yes, the furnace will deal with it.
10. Can you recycle steel bottle tops?
Yes, consider putting them in a steel can and closing them in. More steel is used for bottle caps than cars. They’re important to recycle.
11. Can you recycle pet food sachets?
No, metalicised plastics can’t be recycled.
12. Can you put green waste into a recycling bin?
Absolutely not, it can lead to the whole collection in the truck being taken to landfill. Use your green bin or take any green waste to local council resource recovery centres.
INFORMATION ABOUT RECYCLING IN MITCHELL SHIRE:
What you can recycle in your yellow bin if you reside in the Mitchell Shire.
Take a look at this link to learn about what can and cannot be tossed into your yellow bin.
REDCYCLE GUIDE: https://www.redcycle.net.au/what-to-redcycle/
The REDcycle Program makes it easy for consumers to keep plastic bags and packaging out of landfill. First, please check the packaging for any sign of the new Australian Recycling Label (ARL) symbols (find out more about these here In the absence of one of these symbols (note these are gradually being rolled out to ALL types of packaging – this will just take a little bit of time), use the guide. You can drop off you clean and dry soft plastics. (as per guide), at the front of Woolworths and Coles in Seymour.
**Remember to take your own bags so we can help stop the use of single use plastic bags!