Reducing Waste During Home Isolation
As times have been changing rapidly, we have most likely been spending an increased amount of time at home. Working from home, kids off school at home, no more eating out – with this comes many challenges among this more waste being produced at home!
As waste and recycling are essential services we will always have access to them but ideally you don’t want to be sending more to landfill or over work the recycling system any more.
Are you stuck at home? Have you always wanted to set-up a worm farm or compost bin but didn’t have the time? Now is your chance!
Council is providing a 50% discount on worm farms (including the worms), compost bins and bokashi bins. This includes free home delivery.
Working from Home
Home office printing tips. Set up two screens if you have them, this often eliminates the need to print. Think before you print “do I really need to print this”.
Printing tips with kids. If you have young children at home, you may be printing out activity sheets to keep them occupied. When printing, try to fit as much to the page as possible (i.e. 2 activities per page) and double sided if possible, or use the reverse side as scrap paper.
When you have finished use this paper to make paper aeroplanes or origami before recycling it.
General Waste and Recycling Tips
- Use washed takeaway containers as stackable containers for frozen food
- Use glass jars to store food or other items, or pass them on to friends or groups who make jams
- Drinking tips. Drink tap water (if you are not already!), if you are buying bottles of fizzy drink or soda water invest in a soda stream to make carbonated drinks. This will greatly cut down on the amount of plastic bottles.
Plastic bags and soft plastics, including pasta and rice bags, shopping bags, net bags, cling and bubble wrap can be dropped in a REDcycle bin located at most major supermarkets. You may need to store these so place them in a reusable shopping bag to take to the store with you. For more information visit www.redcycle.net.au
- Freeze leftovers. Ensure you freeze any leftovers you have from dinners, eliminate any possible food waste and save yourself a night of cooking!
- Check what’s in the fridge before going shopping, write a shopping list and plan your next meals around what needs to be eaten. Put things in the freezer if you aren’t able to eat them soon
- Use the Foodwise Recipe Finder to help you use up food that you already have in your kitchen and fridge
- Look at clever ways to reuse items – i.e. games or crafts for the kids to keep them entertained at home
- Resist the temptation to buy two food items for the price of one unless it can be frozen or has a long shelf-life
- A lot of packaging can be avoided or recycled. Fresh food doesn't need packaging and can be placed in your own reusable bags. Rigid (hard) plastics, tins, paper, foil and clean pie trays, cardboard and drink containers can all go in your recycling bin
- Avoid single-use, disposable packaging, for example: plastic bags and wrap, and polystyrene
- Use reusable food containers, lunch boxes, water/drink bottles, straws and beeswax wraps
- When purchasing large appliances or bulky items, ask the retailer to take away the packaging from the new item
- Avoid disposable coffee pods or capsules. You can use refillable coffee capsules that you can continue to fill with your favourite coffee blends
- Avoid junk mail. Place or make a 'No advertising material' or 'No junk mail' label on your letterbox
- Donate unwanted clothing and other goods in reasonable condition to non-profit organisations, charity stores or charity clothing bins
- Option to use 'modern cloth nappies' for reusable, washable nappies made from modern fabrics which are shaped to fit like disposable nappies
Reuse and repurpose
- Use rechargeable batteries
- Become a 'green cleaner' and make your own environmentally-friendly household cleaning products, for example: all-purpose cleaner, clothes and dishwashing liquids
- Join a buy, sell or swap group and offer items that you no longer want to keep, but might be useful to someone else in the community - and consider checking these groups before looking at buying a brand new item
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