OPINION

Bio-based plastics can reduce waste, but only if we invest in both making and getting rid of them

Bio-based plastics can reduce waste, but only if we invest in both making and getting rid of them

With news that companies like Starbucks, Hyatt and Marriott have agreed to ban plastic straws , it's a fitting time to consider the role of plastic in our daily lives. Plastics are an often overlooked modern wonder - cheap and multipurpose substances...

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Why Coles' plastic bag backflip leaves us worse off than before

Why Coles' plastic bag backflip leaves us worse off than before

One month after removing free lightweight plastic bags from checkouts, Australian supermarket giant Coles has decided to offer thicker reusable plastics bags for free, indefinitely.

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Short-term gain for longer-term pain: expert weighs in on Coles backflip

Short-term gain for longer-term pain: expert weighs in on Coles backflipLock icon

The dramas continue for Coles as the supermarket giant has come under fire for its reversal of its decision to stop providing free reusable bags to shoppers.

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Winning the war on e-waste

Winning the war on e-waste

ABC's War on Waste is a boost for recycling electronics.

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How to turn the waste crisis into a design opportunity

How to turn the waste crisis into a design opportunity

You might never have heard of expanded polystyrene, but you've definitely used it. It's the lightweight white foam used for everything from packing peanuts to holding boxes of veggies at the supermarket.

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Why plastic bag bans triggered such a huge reaction

Why plastic bag bans triggered such a huge reaction

Woolworths' and Coles' bans on plastic bags have been but were reportedly met with abuse and assault and claims of profiteering. Even comedians saw value in the theatre of the bag ban.

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How to clean up our universal plastic tragedy

How to clean up our universal plastic tragedy

Twenty five years ago, I spent a summer removing plastic packing bands and plastic nets from 135 entangled Antarctic fur seals on Bird Island, South Georgia in the sub-Antarctic. Plastic marine waste discarded by the fishing industry were the primary...

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Composting massively reduces greenhouse gas emissions compared to landfill

Composting massively reduces greenhouse gas emissions compared to landfillLock icon

At a recent meeting with Local Government Mayors and CEOs, a claim was made that transporting organics by truck to a distant compost facility (in this case 150 km away) would emit more greenhouse gases than landfilling it locally.

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Scientists create new building material out of fungus, rice and glass

Scientists create new building material out of fungus, rice and glass

Would you live in a house made of fungus? It's not just a rhetorical question: fungi are the key to a new low-carbon, fire-resistant and termite-deterring building material.

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Waste of a nation

Waste of a nation

There has been much focus on China's change in policy towards the importation of recyclables, and where this leaves us here in Australia.

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