How much waste do we generate? A lot. 🗑️🗑️🗑️
Latest figures have Australians generating 67 MILLION TONNES of waste per year.
While much focus is on household waste, 1/3 is generated from the commercial and industrial sector, and 1/3 is generated from the construction and demolition industry. And compared with other developed countries, Australians generate MORE WASTE than average and RECYCLES LESS than average.
So what happens with all this waste?
Most of it goes to landfill. Even most of the waste we separate out for recycling ends up in landfill. Contamination from things such as broken glass, food, plastic bags, rubbish and liquids makes it unusable. Packaging has also become much more sophisticated with different materials disrupting the recycling process.
And 'wish-cycling' - putting materials in recycling we hope can be recycled - dooms other perfectly good recyclables to landfill. Ouch!
And even if the recyclable material is pristine, there is no guarantee it will actually be recycled unless there is a buyer for it.
So, what can businesses do? Incorporate effective recycling and encourage mindful recycling practices in the workplace AND purchase recycled materials.