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Canberra’s Own ‘War on Waste’

The ABC Documentary ‘War on Waste,’ shocked the country in revealing that Australians send about 6000 kilograms of textiles and clothing to landfill every 10 minutes.

In a recent Waste Feasibility Study, ACT NoWaste provided Canberrans with their own shocking statistic: In one given year, over 10 million kilograms of textiles is sent to landfill from the ACT alone.

Prior to this release, a statistic published by the ACT Environment Directorate in 2013, showed that every person living in the ACT put about 92 kilograms of recycling on their kerbsides each. According to the same statistic, this is among the highest rates per person of any state in Australia.

However, NoWaste’s study proves we still have a long way to go.

The publication detailed a set of initiatives titled ‘The Roadmap,’ designed to raise our resource recovery from around 70% to 90%. In regard to reducing textile landfill, these initiatives include diverting waste containing recyclables to sorting facilities rather than straight to landfill.

One sorting facility popularly utilised in Canberra is ‘The Green Shed Company,’ which has saved almost 58 million kilograms of waste from landfill to date according to their website.

NoWaste has also written initiatives towards educating the community to remove recyclable materials from kerbside and commercial rubbish bins. One resource NoWaste has already created to move towards this goal is the online ‘Recyclopaedia,’ a highly-detailed, easy to use database explaining where to recycle all matters of waste, from X-Ray Machines to Pizza Boxes.

A message from the Minister included in the paper, states that the government welcomes the results of NoWaste’s research and invites the community to provide feedback.

Minister for City Services, Meegan Fitzharris stated “The study presents its recommendations at a time when public interest in waste management is high. At the national level, television programs like ‘War on Waste’ and 4 Corners have prompted necessary discussions on waste management issues.” The minister announced that an inquiry into the waste sector is currently being conducted.

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