How to get involved in National Recycling Week

By Jennifer McMillan 30 October 2020

This National Recycling Week we're going beyond the bin – find out how you can participate below!

National Recycling Week (9-15 November) started in 1996 to bring a national focus to the Reduce, Reuse, Recycle message and the environmental benefits of recycling. This year’s theme “Recovery – A Future Beyond the Bin” explores how Australians can turn their waste into a valuable resource at home, school, work or in the community. 

We have developed a bunch of resources including ‘A Future Beyond the Bin Mini Guide’ which highlights the six steps you can take to transition to a future beyond the bin. Posters, infographics, activity guides and social media graphics can be found in the Resource Hub.

Follow us on social media to learn how you can take action to reduce waste in our three key areas: packaging, e-waste and food waste. You can also share our graphics on your own social media platforms or tell us about your waste journey and what you’ve learnt along the way. We’ll be sharing videos and stories in the week of National Recycling Week and answering all of your recycling questions. 

Tag @PlanetArk on Facebook and Instagram and use the hashtags #NationalRecyclingWeek and #GoBeyondTheBin

What will you do to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle this National Recycling Week? We have a few ideas to get you started.  

At home

Get involved in a November Muster 

With an estimated 5 million mobiles gathering dust in drawers across the country, now is the time to give your mobile phone the opportunity to have a new life. Recycle it at your local MobileMuster drop-off point or from home with a free mailing satchel. Follow these tips from MobileMuster to remove your personal information from your device before recycling it. 

E-waste is one of the fastest growing forms of waste in Australia, with Australians disposing of 21.7kg of e-waste per person per year and reportedly only 10% being officially collected and recycled. Find out more about e-waste recycling here.

Learn about the Australasian Recycling Label 

The Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) takes the confusion out of recycling by showing you which piece of packaging goes in which bin. The Check It! Before You Chuck It campaign is encouraging Australians to always check for the Australasian Recycling Label on their packaging when they’re at the bin. Watch our new video to learn more.

Buy It Back Day (BIBD)

BIBD is a day to celebrate mindful purchasing by buying something second-hand, celebrating second-hand purchases or buying something made from recycled materials. Post a photo on social media celebrating your second-hand finds tagging @PlanetArk. Find out more and search for participating second-hand stores here

Every 10 minutes Australians throw out approximately 6,000kg of clothes. Give your clothes a new life by donating them and keeping them out of landfill. Join the Moving the Needle campaign to reduce the number of textiles in landfill by 20% by 2022. Find your nearest donation point here.

At work 

Get your staff involved in Recycling Trivia 

We’ve created a recycling themed trivia package for you to use within your workplace. Challenge your colleagues to see how much they know about recycling. Get your free trivia kit

Host a Monday Muster 

Give the valuable materials in your mobile the opportunity to have a new life by getting your workplace involved in a Monday Muster. If your staff are in the office, you can get your muster on any Monday in November as part of National Recycling Week. Find out more and our download guides, email templates and certificates here. 

Set up a new recycling system 

Research shows 72% of Australians are concerned about waste. National Recycling Week is the ideal time to make your workplace more sustainable by setting up free recycling collection points for things that can’t be put in our kerbside recycling bins. Find out more about how your workplace can collect mobile phones, printer and ink cartridges, e-waste and more for recycling here

Workplace Webinar

Research shows over 40% of Australians believe workplaces lack recycling options. Join the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) and the team from Planet Ark to explore the theme of ‘A Future Beyond the Bin’. There will be tips on how to recycle more, waste less and get packaging recycled right, as well as free educational resources. 

Date: Wednesday, 4 November 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM. Register here

At School – get involved in the Schools Recycle Right Challenge

Lesson Plans 

We have a wide range of free curriculum-aligned lessons with Cool Australia, and this year we have new Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) lesson plans. 

Activities and Resources 

Get the kids involved in setting up a recycling system at school, hold a waste-free lunch challenge, make a recycled herb garden and more! 


Enter the competition and you could win one of three x 3D Makerbot Sketch Classroom from Kyocera (RRP $3499 + GST per bundle). Runner up prizes include a 2040 book and DVD bundle signed by Damon Gameau, new Planet Ark Unwrapped 100% Recycled Paper and bonus prizes for teachers who use the new ARL lesson plans. 

How to enter:

Download and complete one of our National Recycling Week lesson plans, take a photo of your students completed lesson plans and tell us how you got involved. Enter here

Find out more here

In the Community 

Take the Recycle Right Quiz 

How much do you actually know about what happens to our waste in Australia? Test your recycling knowledge with the Recycle Right Quiz

Turn Containers into Cash 

Tune into our free Containers to Cash webinar to hear from industry and community experts on how charities, community groups and grassroots organisations can benefit financially when bottles, cartons and cans are recycled through container deposit schemes. Tuesday, 10 November from 12-1pm. Register here

Jennifer McMillan
Jen worked as a vet nurse while studying environmental science and completing her master's degree in Journalism. She loves bushwalking, storytelling, caring for baby animals, Australian birds and river red gums. Jen works on the National Tree Day campaign and Planet Ark's Seedling Bank.