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19 August 2010

Talking rubbish with like-minded friends

Photo credit: winning poster in the World Industrial Design Day competition

Do you have anxieties about throwing things "away"?  Do people putting food scraps into recycling make you edgy?  Do you break out in a sweat when there's no recycling bin to dispose of your drink bottle?

During our recent visit to Melbourne for the retail trade fairs, I had a hurried and animated chat with Wasteman.  What fun to gabble with a like-minded soul about rubbish -- rubbish of the wasteful kind that is.  Wasteman devotes a blog to problems with waste and loves to take photos of rubbish bins and odd rubbishy things.  He introduced me to the waste pyramid and thinking about recycling being the last resort. 

Could it be that because we find recycling so easy we are actually likely to generate more recycling and waste, rather than first trying to avoid, reduce or reuse?
At home we have just ordered a larger recycling bin being offered by the Brisbane City Council.  Ours is always overflowing each fortnight, but maybe that's not such a good measure of our eco-performance. Seems we should actually be trying to downsize our recycling bin by generating less "stuff" to be recycled.

Things to make me feel less-wasteful:
  • Buy in bulk
  • Choose items with little or no packaging
  • Pack a wrapper-free lunch using Goodbyn or Kids Konserve
  • Grow our own vegetables
  • Use shopping bags that last forever.  Wasteman has more to say on this!
  • Stop the Junk Mail, but what about the newspapers?
  • And my daily buzz, BYO my KeepCup reusable coffee cup - and save 50cents in the process (1 coffee per day x 50 cents saved = $182 dollars a year!)
We just received a lovely letter from the Salvos Stores about their Buy Nothing New Month in October.  They say this national 'conscientious consumuption' campaign is about reducing the community's impact on the environment by encouraging reusing and recycling.  It's a fantastic concept.

I love to send things to the Salvos or Reverse Garbage....I've blogged before about my hoarding tendencies because I can't bear to throw things away (Continuous loop of Reverse Garbage).  

Are there any other friends out there with strange anxieties about waste?  Tell us here or please pop on over to our Facebook page and tell us there...

Author & Editor

Tracey Bailey is the founder of Biome Eco Stores and mother of two. After working in corporate communications and starting a family, she made a choice to be part of the solution to our planet's future and started Biome Eco Stores. Tracey is passionate about educating the community about living eco-friendly and sustainable lives through her extended product, chemical, health and environmental knowledge.


shona said...

Hey there,
waste is a huge issue. mayeb the biggest one. But preceeding that is of course, consumption. I dont buy much anymore.
i say what we really need is an extra tier in that pyramid:
bring back the old days when you could repair your tv, computer, toaster, remote, oven, fridge, washer etc.
bring back the repairing seamstresses.
lets create an eco industrial repair centre in each major city. where you can donate your broken stuff, so that the repairers can fix it or upcycle it and sell it on. Or pay them to fix it for you. what a huge industry that could be, employing loads of people, maybe even marginalised people, work for the dole-rs...! councils could take their roadside collections to these centres and dontae them, or sell them cheapo. There could be monthly auctions. Scrap yards. AWESOME!
who's in?

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