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Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village

Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village (AARV) comprises of 85 independent living units
(ILUs) and a 50 bed aged care facility (ACF) that also caters for people with dementia.
The ILU area also accommodates a community centre and a church. Whilst the ILUs
were built in 1991, the village expanded in 2003 to accommodate the aged care hostel.
AARV employs 55 staff members with the village generally running to capacity.

 Waste collection for auditing at the village   Waste Snapshot
                                                Given that the ILUs are classed as
                                                residential, Ballina Shire Council provides a
                                                residential wheelie bin service to this area.
                                                AARV are allocated 84 waste bins and
                                                approximately 60 recycling bins. The costs
                                                for these are incorporated into rates

                                          A waste service provider supplies the ILU
                                          with one 0.75m3 trade waste bin, while the
                                          ACF has one 0.75m3 trade waste bin and a
                                          0.75m3 cardboard recycling bin. Both trade
waste bins are emptied twice weekly and the recycling bin is emptied once a fortnight.
The ACF also has cooking oil and pathological waste collection services.

Existing waste reduction measures include:
    Cleaning products bought in bulk
    Updated goods are reconditioned or ‘cannibalised’ as much as possible for other
       useful items on the premises, such as spare parts or smokers receptacles. A
       large workshop caters for this.
    Mulch was once collected from ILU residents (at the time of the audit, this was
       not in effect due to the construction of two new ILUs requiring the demolition of
       their allocated mulching space). There are two mulchers at the complex that are
       currently not in use.
    Cooking oil and clinical waste are stored separately for pick up.

Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village’s Waste Reduction Project
Please click below for information on Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village’s
participation in the Business Waste Reduction Project

      Audit results

      Survey results

      Waste Reduction Action Plan

NEWF Business Waste Reduction Project – Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village
Audit Results

Waste composition of trade waste bins
Analysis of the Aged Care Facility’s (ACF’s) trade waste bin was performed on total
waste produced in one week. Food and kitchen was the largest waste source at 59%
followed by pathogenic waste at 13% and cardboard/paper at 9%.

Graph 1: Composition of the retirement village’s aged care facility trade waste bin

                      ACF Trade Waste Bin Composition
                                     film/plastic bags 1%          glass
            non recyclable plastic          2%                      1%
                                                                 other organic
                recyclable plastic                                    <1%


                                                                                 food and kitchen


Independent Living Unit (ILU) Waste Bins
Residential waste bins from the ILUs showed that garden waste such as vegetation,
leaves and trimmings were the largest waste source at 68% of total waste composition.
This was followed by food waste at 23% and compostable packaging at just 2%. Other
materials recorded but not represented in the graph are recyclable plastics, glass and
earth/inert/ceramics as these all composed of less than 1% of the total waste bin

NEWF Business Waste Reduction Project – Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village
Graph 2: Composition of independent living unit waste bins

                          ILU Waste Bin Composition
                                              1% recyclable metals
                    plastic                              1%
                      1%                            household chem
                 film/plastic bags                       1%

            food and kitchen


ILU recycling bins
The ILU recycling bins are of a high standard. Recyclable items are washed and the
correct numbered plastics are recycled. The only contaminants recorded were a small
amount of non-recyclable plastics (not displayed on the graph as its overall percentage
was less than 1).

Two residents had confused the recycling split bin’s cardboard/paper and
plastics/metals recycling sides. Upon investigation, it was noted both bins belonged to
visually impaired residents. Ballina Shire Council had placed stickers on these bins in
the past to remind residents of correct usage of the recycling split bins. However, as the
residents are visually impaired their practices have not changed.

NEWF Business Waste Reduction Project – Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village
Graph 3: Composition of independent living unit recycling bins

                      ILU Recycling Bin Composition

                recyclable plastic    5%



                                                                                    ^ TOP

Staff surveys produced the following responses:
    The majority of respondents (25 out of 27) indicated they recycled all materials
       possible when at home. The two staff members who did not recycle at home both
       stated this was due to no recycling available in their locality.
    Ten respondents specifically mentioned home food/green waste composting.
    22 out of the 27 respondents confirmed they recycle at AARV. Materials that are
       recycled are: cardboard/paper (22 staff); cooking oil and green waste (2
       respondents each); clinical waste, timber and tin (1 respondent each).
    Many staff members expressed dissatisfaction with the current recycling system.
       The principal reason given for not recycling at AARV was due to no adequate
       recycling programme (11), for example appropriate bins in appropriate areas and
       inadequate infrastructure.

Staff ideas for easier waste minimisation are collated below:
   • Allocate appropriate recycling bins for separation
   • Place food waste bins in the kitchens/compost food waste
   • Introduce residential recycling split bins (half cardboard/paper, half recyclables)
        into the ACF for staff and residents
   • Recycling bins in staff rooms
   • Provide access to recycling bins for separation
   • Designate appropriate disposal points and provide training in using them

NEWF Business Waste Reduction Project – Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village
     •                 Education
     •                 Clear procedures for recycling practices

     Below is a graph showing how respondents rated the importance of recycling at

     Graph 4: staff perceptions of the importance of workplace recycling

                            Perceived Importance by Staff of Recycling at

  no. of respondents

                              four      five      six       seven        eight   nine     ten
                                                        rate out of 10

                                                                                                   ^ TOP

Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village’s Waste Reduction Action Plan
Based on the information taken from the waste audits and staff surveys, opportunities
and practical solutions were discussed. A waste reduction action plan was created, with
timeframes and responsibility allocated to each step. Overleaf is a summarised version
of their action plan.

ACTION                                   STEPS                                     RESOURCE RECOVERY

1. Reduce food                           1. Identify food waste reduction          Providing bins throughout
waste                                    options and investigate use of the        the complex for recycling
                                         most appropriate method eg. bokashi       and composting has the
                                         2. Decide whether separate bins in        potential to reduce ACF
                                         ACF kitchen for food waste is viable      waste by up to

NEWF Business Waste Reduction Project – Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village
                        3. Showcase food waste reduction           134kg/week (59%) and
                        and composting options to ILU              ILU waste by 23%
                        residents at committee meeting
2. Implement an         1. Select best methods for green           ILU residents are avid
effective compost       waste composting for AARV                  gardeners, producing
system for green        2. Designate a space for green waste       around 50kg of green
waste                   composting and set up mulchers for         waste every week.
                        AARV garden areas                          Mulching this could be
                                                                   used on their extensive
                                                                   gardens thus saving water
                        3. Ensure all ILU residents are aware
                        of the mulching system and place a
                        notice up at the community centre

                        4. Place information on mulching
                        options available for residents in the
                        next edition of the residents handbook
                        (Oct 2006)
3. Increase             1. Place paper bins in ACF offices         While AARV cardboard
cardboard/paper                                                    recycling is going well,
recycling               2. Ensure all staff are aware of what is   21kg/week are still getting
                        allowed in the cardboard/paper             sent to landfill.
                        recycling bin
                        3. Investigate the option of having
                        cardboard recycling picked up weekly
                        instead of fortnightly
4. Create               1. Investigate the viability and           Recyclables (other than
opportunities to        allocated space of using residential       cardboard/paper) currently
recycle other           recycling bins in the ACF                  create approximately
materials                                                          30kg/month going to
5. Provide ongoing      1. Include waste reduction measures         Educational tools that
education               in staff induction notes.                   help promote or aid in
throughout the                                                      effective recycling are
centre                  2. See Action 1 Step 3; Action 2 Step       crucial to waste reduction
                        3 and 4; Action 3 Step 2                    success.
                                                                   All other Actions are
                                                                   dependent on this
6. Implement a          1. identify areas that need to be          Provides a waste
centre wide waste       outlined                                   reduction framework
reduction and                                                      /guidelines for the centre
                        2. Produce a waste reduction policy
purchasing policy                                                  to use into the future.
                        for the centre
                                                                   Buying recycled and
                                                                   recyclable products
                                                                   ensures businesses are
                                                                   truly recycling.
                                                                                      ^ TOP

NEWF Business Waste Reduction Project – Alstonville Adventist Retirement Village

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