Reframing Recycling

After what was a hugely frustrating time for everyone, Port Phillip Council started sending recyclables to be processed again on the 13 March 2019.

This event has sparked a healthy debate about the role of recycling and our culture of consumption. Where possible we all need to play our part in taking some of the burden off the recycling industry.

Recycling alone cannot solve our waste management challenges. Here are 10 simple ways to reduce our dependency on recycling and consider our consumption choices:

  1. The first question we should be asking whenever we want a new item - do I actually need this item? If the answer is yes, could I reuse an existing item I already have or acquire the item from an op shop, friend or family member?

  2. Eliminate single use plastic; from shopping bags and coffee cups to straws and food containers, choose a reusable option.

  3. Go paper free; newspapers, bills and statements can all be viewed online to minimise our waste paper.

  4. Put a ‘No Junk Mail’ sticker on your letter box, to avoid unwanted, unnecessary paper waste.

  5. Visit your local repair café and let them work their magic when an item is broken, rather than throw it away.

  6. Reuse old jars, bottles and containers to store other household items. 

  7. Make sure you’re getting your recycling right and not contaminating the other recyclables.

  8. Bulk buy any staple items to minimise packaging waste.

  9. Choose to refill containers of food, drink and cosmetic items wherever possible.

  10. Upcycling, seeing a need and filling it not with a new product but rather a mix of those you have or aren’t using, can be a great way to give your old things a new life.

Let us know if you do anything in your day to day life to minimise your dependence on recycling.