City waste team cleans up at green awards

The City of Sydney has taken out a top award for leadership and innovation in waste recycling at this year’s Green Globes for energy, water and waste efficiency.

The NSW Government’s Green Globes are awarded annually for environmental leadership and innovation. The City’s Resource Recovery team was announced as a winner for excellence in energy, water and waste efficiency in the waste and recycling category.

The City’s green roofs and walls program was also highly commended, and the City-led Better Buildings Partnership program was a finalist.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the City’s inventive zero waste programs had successfully diverted more than two-thirds of domestic waste from landfill.

“We’ve been trialling innovative new resource recovery programs to make it easier and more accessible for our residents to recycle more often,” the Lord Mayor said.

“By diverting more than two thirds of domestic waste from landfill we are doing our part to reduce impacts on our natural environment by recycling and re-using waste materials.”

“Our City’s waste team deserve this win for consistently coming up with innovative approaches, and a big thanks must also go to our residents and visitors who do the right thing and dispose of waste responsibly.”

In addition to the City’s traditional kerbside recycling service, ongoing resource recovery efforts include:

Processing household garbage into low-grade compost;
Reverse vending machines offering incentives for drink container recycling;
Sydney’s first underground bin system in Darlinghurst;
Garbage Guru web app to answer the community’s recycling questions
Video series to promote waste avoidance and the City’s waste and recycling services.
E-waste recycling trials in city apartment blocks, and;
Battery, bulb and mobile phone recycling stations in community centres and libraries.
The City of Sydney has diverted 69 per cent – or about 45,000 tonnes – of its household waste from landfill each year, exceeding state-wide targets.

As part of this resource recovery process, more than 25,000 tonnes of rubbish from the red-lid bin is diverted annually from landfill. This prevents about 30,000 tonnes of carbon emissions from harmful methane gases entering the atmosphere – the equivalent of taking 6,250 cars off the road.

The City’s reverse vending machines located at Haymarket, Circular Quay, Redfern and Wynyard have proved popular with the community and can hold up to 2,000 containers each. Prizes offered by the machines include, two-for-one food truck vouchers or a 10 cent donation to charity.