Pandemic increases council clean-up costs

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In Canterbury-Bankstown, volumes increased by 39% between 2018-19 and 2020-2021. The service cost the board $ 6 million last year.

A spokesperson said: ‘We have seen an increase in bulky waste during the pandemic, in part due to families spending more time at home and also because the council has realigned its waste management services. , allowing residents to dispose of three cubic meters of bulky waste, instead of two cubic meters. ″ ⁣

Of those surveyed, only the Northern Beaches Council reported a decrease in the volume of bulky waste collected from households since 2018-2019.

Online shopping surge

The surge in household spending patterns has been partly attributed to the problem. Australia Post data shows Australians’ online shopping consumption accelerated during the pandemic, increasing 57% in 2020 and 17% in 12 months through November 2021.

The chief executive of the Australian Council of Recycling industry group, Suzanne Toumbourou, said reducing consumption habits was the first key to reducing the increasing rates of bulky household waste.

“The second is reuse and to think about what we could reuse or reuse that is already in sufficient condition. There are really great opportunities in the used market as well as through repairs, ”she said.

Recycling application

She also highlighted a new app, Recycle Mate, which uses photo recognition to help people know if items can be recycled and where they can be taken.

“Ultimately, the next approach is zero waste,” Ms. Toumbourou said.

“Recycling plays a vital role, but before you jump into recycling you also need to think about how we are making the most of what we already have. “

The increase in bulky waste and measures to divert waste from landfills have helped skyrocket the popularity of Facebook groups sharing the locations of dumped waste. Inner West’s Street Bounty page is one of the busiest in town.

Lucy, who lives in Lilyfield in West Sydney and is an active member of the group, has been recycling bulky waste for almost 10 years and says most of the items are of high quality.

She recently hosted a birthday party in the garden using only salvaged furniture and decor items. Her most valuable find is a vintage Apple computer now considered a collector’s item.

“It started with upgrading our own furniture with items we found and then it was about finding items to reuse and since we had kids and doing craft projects I found things that I thought were fun to turn into something else. Said Lucie.

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