If you want to reduce waste in your home, the best thing to do is to avoid purchasing products that create waste in the first place.
Why is avoiding waste important?
Waste generates approximately 3% of all greenhouse gas emissions in Moreland. By choosing to buy clothing, plastic and food products that can be reused, recycled or re-purposed you can reduce your carbon footprint and help the environment.
Avoiding waste saves resources including energy, materials, time and money. While recycling is an important step in recovering materials, the process still requires additional resources to make new products and separate old ones. The waste hierarchy outlines the most preferable ways of dealing with waste, starting with avoidance.
How can I avoid general waste at home?
- only buy what you need, make a shopping list and stick to it
- say no to single-use items (coffee cups, straws, bottled water, plastic bags)
- buy products with less packaging or recyclable packaging
- buy in bulk, and refill and reuse containers
- buy second hand or swap goods
- repair rather than replace
- buy products made from recycled materials
- buy products that last and can be repaired, which is often cheaper in the long-run
- choose energy and water efficient products
- take reusable bags when you go shopping
- compost your food scraps and green waste at home, or use Council’s Food and Garden Organics Bin
- responsibly recycle and dispose of household and office items
For more advice on how to avoid waste see Reducing Waste on the Council’s website.
How can I avoid food waste at home?
On average, Australians waste 1 shopping bag of food per week. Unless it is composted at home, this food either goes to landfill or gets turned into compost after being placed in our food and garden organics (FOGO) bin. Either way this is a big waste of food, as well as all the resources that went into producing, processing and transporting it.
For many more tips on how to reduce food waste at home, including the importance of shopping lists, recipes for using up surplus food, and food storage tricks, you can view more information on the Merri-bek City Council website or visit Sustainability Victoria’s Love Food Hate Waste campaign.