cua_recycling_fact_sheet by shuifanglj


									Recycling Fact Sheet
July 2009

What a waste!
Australians are among the highest waste producers in the world. We generate almost 41 million [1]
tonnes of rubbish each year – that is about 1.9 tonnes from each of us. Half of this rubbish is either
being dumped in the environment or sent to landfill where it cannot be recycled.

The Problem
Rubbish: Tonnes of problems                           Recycling: Loads of benefits                      Did you know?

Waste of resources:                                   Recycling is the process by which                 Every 10 tonnes of recyclable
All waste materials represent an                      waste materials are diverted from the             materials recovered is
investment of water, energy and natural               waste stream, sorted and used to                  equivalent to taking 4 cars off
resources, such as coal, oil or trees.                produce new products. Manufacturing               the road permanently.[3]
Once waste goes to landfill, virgin                   new products using recycled materials
material has to be taken from our                     requires far less energy, water and
environment to produce new products.                  resources than using virgin materials.            Recycling one tonne of paper
                                                                                                        and cardboard saves 13 trees
Greenhouse gases:                                                                                       and 2.5 barrels of oil. [7]
As waste rots in landfill, carbon dioxide
and methane are created. The latter is a
major greenhouse gas, which contributes                                                                 Each aluminium can recycled
to global warming 21 times more than                                                                    saves enough electricity to run
carbon dioxide. [2]                                                                                     a TV for 3 hours. [6]

Landfill space and contamination:
It is difficult to find suitable locations for                                                          An individual who lets their
landfills. At current rates of waste                                                                    daily newspaper go to landfill
disposal, we are soon running out of                  To reduce the impact of rubbish on our            will cause 350 kilograms of
space.                                                environment refuse, reuse or recycle a            extra carbon dioxide each
Landfills produce a toxic liquid, called              product. The benefits of recycling:               year. [9]
leachate. Leachate is a mixture of
organic acids, dissolved chemicals and                ● conserves natural resources, such
rainwater. It can contaminate                         as coal, oil, minerals and trees.                 Don’t put broken drink ware
surrounding land and waterways. [2]                                                                     into your recycling bins. Just 5
                                                      ● saves a large amount of water and               grams of glass from drink
Threat to marine life:                                energy in the production process, e.g.            ware is enough to
Every year over 6 million tonnes of                   making aluminium from recycled                    contaminate an entire ton of
rubbish are dumped into the world’s                   material instead of bauxite requires up           recyclable glass. [6]
oceans. 80% of this waste is plastic and              to 95% less energy [2].
has led to an estimated 46,000 pieces of
                                                      ● cuts greenhouse gases by reducing               Each year household
plastic for every square mile of ocean
                                                      the amount of rubbish breaking down               recycling in Victoria saves 8,
and is responsible for killing more than a
                                                      in landfill and saving energy during the          960 mega litres of water
million seabirds and 100,000 mammals
                                                      production process.                               alone. That’s the water
every year. [5]
                                                                                                        consumption of 3,370,000
                                                      ● extends landfill life as well as                people for one week. [10]
                                                      protects land and waterways as
                                                      contamination with leachate is

                                                      ● saves lives of marine animals if
                                                      plastic and other recyclable material is
                                                      disposed of properly.

                                                        Clean Up Australia Ltd
                               ABN 93 003 884 991 PO Box R725, Royal Exchange NSW 1225 Australia
                           tel: 1800 CUA DAY      email:   web:
                                                 Clean Up Australia Limited
                                                     ABN 93 003 884 991
Recycling Fact Sheet
July 2009

What a waste!

How to recycle
Kerbside recycling                              Recycling organic waste                         FAQs on recycling

Most council provide households                 47% of Australia’s household waste is           How clean should the rubbish
with a dedicated recycling bin for              made up of organic waste like food              be? The material doesn’t have to be
kerbside collection.                            scraps and garden cuttings. [2]                 spotless, but should be clean of food
                                                Recycling can turn organic waste into           scraps and dry when placed in the
What goes in the recycling bin? [8]             valuable gardening and farming                  bin.
                                                products, such as fertiliser, mulch and
Plastics                                        conditioner.                                    What happens with plastic lids?
Milk bottles, ice cream & takeaway                                                              All lids have to be removed from
containers, juice & cream containers,           Is there a kerbside recycling bin               bottles and jars and thrown into the
all other products with the plastic             for organic waste?                              garbage. They cause problems in the
identification codes 1-7 (check with your       Most council provide a bin for your             recycling process when left on.
local council which codes they support)         garden cuttings. Some council now
                                                also collect organic kitchen waste in           Does one plastic bag in the
Aluminium & Steel:                              this bin, but a lot don’t. Please check         recycling bin matter? Recycling
Empty steel cans, aluminium soft                with your council.                              rubbish placed in plastic bags cannot
drink cans, clean aluminium foil & pie                                                          be sorted. Even worse, plastic bags
trays, empty aerosol cans                       What else can I do?                             can get stuck in the sorting
                                                Create a compost heap, bokashi bin or           machinery.
Paper, Cardboard & Cartons:                     worm farm for your organic waste. You
Newspapers & magazines,                         will get some great rich, healthy soil for      What is waste contamination?
cardboard, cereal & food boxes,                 the garden in return.                           Contamination occurs when a non-
office paper, envelopes & mail,                                                                 recyclable item is placed in the bin
empty milk & juice cartons                                                                      and makes other material useless for
                                                Other recycling                                 recycling.
Empty glass bottles & jars                      There are many options to recycle
                                                some of your other waste materials,
                                                such as e-waste, batteries, mobile              References
                                                phones, printer cartridges, polystyrene         1) Department of the Environment, Water,
                                                and plastic bags.                               Heritage and the Arts,
                                                ● You can search for recycling options          2) Australian Bureau of Statistics,
                                                for each product at                   
                                                                                                3) DECC NSW,
                                                or call the National Recycling Hotline:
What doesn’t go with kerbside                   1300 733 712.
recycling? [8]                                                                                  5) UNEP, Marine Litter: A Global Challenge
Plastic bags, nappies, ceramics,                ● Check Clean Up Australia’s fact               (2009) ,
cookware & crockery, oven-proof                 sheets at
glass, medical glass, light bulbs &                                                             6) Planet Ark,
broken drinking glass, syringes,                a/fact-sheets-index.html.                       7) Cleanaway,
polystyrene, hazardous and liquid
waste.                                          ● Go to our website at                          8) Visy Recycling,
Check with your local council to find           /waste.html.                                    9) CUA Activity Sheet Resource Rubbish
out exactly which materials they
accept.                                                                                         10) EcoRecycle Victoria, Local government
                                                                                                data collection 2002 – 2003 Kerbside Waste
                                                                                                Management Services.

                                                      Clean Up Australia Ltd
                                ABN 93 003 884 991 PO Box R725, Royal Exchange NSW 1225 Australia
                           tel: 1800 CUA DAY    email:   web:
                                               Clean Up Australia Limited
                                                   ABN 93 003 884 991

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