Recycling tips

I recently attended a waste and recycling course (Earth Carers), run by the East Metropolitan Region Council (EMRC). The EMRC handles the waste and recycling for several shires, including the City of Swan. As part of the course, we were lucky enough to have a tour of the plant that handles the recycling. It was impressive to see how it worked. But even more impressive was the volume of stuff that comes through!

It was also surprising to see that people are still an integral part of the sorting process, with 20 workers per a shift. So to make it easier and safer for them, as well as improving recycling, here’s a few tips I picked up:

1) Don’t put plastic bags in the recycling bin.

Anything in closed plastic bags will be thrown out. Plus loose plastic bags can clog the machinery. If you want to recycle them, store them up and take them to the Coles or Woolworths recycling bins. Of course, it’s best not to use them in the first place 😉

2) Never put engine oil in the recycling bin

It contaminates everything around it! You can drop off waste oil to Red Hill tip

3) Take the lids off all plastic bottles and containers.

Some can be recycled, but it’s currently best to not put them in the recycling. If the lids are on, it also makes it harder for them to compact the bottles and often means fluids will still be present and will leak everywhere.

These are just the top tips to help the people at the recycling plant. Please post your tips to reduce, reuse and recycling!

Hopefully we can organise a tour of the plant for TTG in the near future. Please email us if you’d be interested in coming along…..

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4 responses to “Recycling tips

  1. If you recycle your stuff, then you could influence more people to follow your example by being more vocal about it. A way to let other people know about your recycling activities is to snap a picture of yourself while at work. Here’s the application for doing just that. http://youtu.be/qxQn-00Rr7s

  2. It’s awesome that you care for the peanlt. It’d be great if people tried to use alternatives to conserve the earth. Here’s some ideas you may be able to use. Just remeber hairspray ain’t gonna be much a difference here’s some of the bigger issues.1. get a car ( larger vehicles use up more gasoline) possibly one that doesn’t need oil. You also get some tax incentive benefit out of that or something and can use the carpool lane w/ a single person.2. get Energy Saver products like washers, dryers, lightbulbs and anything else when purchasing something new.3. there are windows that are energy saving that you can research and look for4.showers not baths5. Don’t leave the lights/computers/tv on if you’re not using them.6.use fans instead of air conditioners7.battery operated stuff versus something you plug into a socket.8.plastic bags over paper. Recycle those plastic bags by using them as small trash bags for your bathroom trash can.its the corporations and factors and stuff that can do alot just by turning off the lights and computers when they leave work for the night but one step at a time I suppose

  3. Pingback: Waste & Recycling Course | Transition Town Guildford

  4. Have read the ‘recycling tips’ article posted back in October 2011. Some good tips here. I’m a sustainability graduate and can add the following which I hope is useful.
    1. When plastic bags are recycled, it takes more energy for them to undergo this process than it does to make them in the first place. The best thing we can do is to say NO to plastic bags, even over paper bags. The damage a plastic bag can do to the environment (especially to marine life if it gets into a waterway) is significant. It’s great marketing for Coles and Woolies to have a plastic bag recycling depot but it doesn’t make sense on an environmental level. Every single piece of plastic that has ever been manufactured on this earth is still here. Plastic does not biodegrade, it just breaks down into smaller pieces/molecules.
    2. Buy second hand over new where possible. That way you are avoiding ‘buying into’ the damaging life cycle a product creates when it is manufactured. From the mining process (somewhere on earth), the manufacturing process (usually cheap dehumanising labour in another country),to the multiple transportation processes it takes to get to an enery guzzling shopping centre near you. See http://www.storyofstuff.org for a more succinct explanation.
    The best thing my husband and I have bought this year (2nd hand) is a game of ‘scrabble’! We watch less TV at night (so we use less energy), we are learning something new and above all it’s fun 😉

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