Future Focus: Reset the dial on landfill food and organic 'waste'

Future Focus: Reset the dial on landfill food and organic ‘waste’

But it prompts the questions – what should be done, and why do we continue to allow nutritious food to go to landfill? Why do we send policy and landfill price signals that fail to reflect the true cost of food in landfill? It should be far more expensive to send food to landfill than building rubble, for example.

Inert building rubble does not emit methane and contribute to climate change, nor does it produce leachate that seeps into groundwater and river systems, and there are few beneficial alternative destinations for rubble as there is for food. Read more

Mobile Conversations: Should I Recycle or Reuse?

Mobile Conversations: Should I Recycle or Reuse?

Independent market research conducted by IPSOS for MobileMuster highlights that more people than ever before are reusing their mobiles. The research revealed that one in 10 are selling or trading in their old mobiles and one in six are giving them to family or friends.

One of the most popular ways to reuse old mobiles that still work is to sell them or pass them on to friends and family, and both outcomes mean that the life of the device is extended. Read more

Hidden treasure beneath our feet

Hidden treasure beneath our feet

Wherever you go in the world, roadsides are rarely pristine. Various detritus including bits of cardboard, dust, glass, grit, metal, paper, plastic, leaves, wood and other organics often accumulate on highways. For this reason, street sweeping machines are commonplace on Australian streets, but what happens to the material they collect? Normally it is just seen as an irritation with landfill as the most suitable destination. In the past, there’s been little reason to view it any other way. Sorting through the volume and variety of material just hasn’t been worth the time, effort or cost. Read more

Progress to 100% renewable energy in Victoria

Progress to 100% renewable energy in Victoria

These are ambitious targets and the following questions need to be asked:

  1. Are these targets being aimed for elsewhere?
  2. If so, what progress are these other countries making toward achieving these targets?
  3. In those countries what are the distinctive developments that are allowing such progress to be made?
  4. Does Victoria have similar policies, programs and progress to allow these goals to be met?
  5. What real actions are needed in Victoria to improve the chances of meeting these targets and goals?

Read more

The state of the waste data

The state of the waste data

The SOE concludes that: “Despite an overall increase in waste generation, Australia’s total disposal tonnage decreased from about 21.5 megatonnes to about 19.5 megatonnes (about 9.5%) between 2006-07 and 2010-11. During this period, the resource recovery rate in Australia increased from 51% to 60%. The quantity of material recycled increased significantly from 21.4 megatonnes to 27.3 megatonnes per year, or by about 27%.” (Australian State of the Environment 2016, p.90) Read more

Our climate is changing. Can the waste sector help?

Our climate is changing. Can the waste sector help?

Despite clear and overwhelming evidence that our climate is changing right now, the appetite for action at a political level is diminishing. In Australia, the Climate Council was defunded, the carbon tax abolished, and a general sense seems to be settling in that climate change doesn’t really matter.

Globally it’s even worse. Climate change is an opinion, a Chinese hoax, a conspiracy. Politicians here and overseas make straight faced assertions that the evidence doesn’t exist, or that it has been manipulated. Read more