March 18, 2019
Last month the Western Australian government announced a new strategy aimed at reducing waste generation and lifting recycling rates in the state, with a special focus on organic waste.
The policy, named the Waste Avoidance and Resource Recovery Strategy 2030, includes plans to introduce a three-bin waste system, including a bin for food and garden organics, to all metropolitan areas by 2025 while lifting recycling rates to 75 percent.
Western Australia currently has one of the lowest metropolitan recycling rates in the country with a recent report revealing just 36 percent of household waste in the state’s capital, Perth, was being recycled.
One of the biggest changes to come will be the introduction of a food and garden organics (FOGO) bin to all households in metropolitan areas by 2025. A number of councils have already proven the effectiveness of organics bins, with recycling rates doubling in areas that had implemented a three bin system.
The City of Bunbury council was one of the first in the state to introduce FOGO bins over five years ago in 2014. Organics collected in the town are composted and turned into fertiliser for local gardens and lawns. Head of the council, Tony Battersby, told the ABC the bins had made a huge difference to the amount of waste sent to landfill.
“It was sitting around 24 per cent diversion [away from landfill] and I think the city has got it up as high as 67 per cent," Battersby said.
"In the City of Bunbury's case it was 6,000 tonnes a year diverted away from landfill.”
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Liam is Planet Ark's Communications Coordinator. Prior to joining Planet Ark Liam spent his time studying global environmental issues, travelling Southeast Asia on the cheap and working for a sustainable property management company in Bali, Indonesia.