World Soils Day pledge: Industry, councils and government commit to cutting green bin contamination
To mark World Soils Day (5 December), industry, councils and government have renewed their commitment to working with the community to reduce contamination in household green bins.
Victorian councils are signing up to the Back to Earth Initiative, which works with industry to promote food and green waste recycling, and educates households about what can go in their green bin.
The Back to Earth Initiative shows how food and green waste put into household green bins is turned into something valuable—compost. Victorians recycle over 400,000 tonnes of food and green waste in their household green bins each year. Councils take it to a commercial facility to be composted, which is why it’s important that plastic, glass and other rubbish is kept out.
Victorian farmers buy the compost to help nourish soils and prevent erosion. World Soils Day is a reminder about the importance of soil health, as soil erosion can reduce crop yields by 50%. But when compost is added, nutrients are returned to the soil, helping retain moisture and providing important microorganisms somewhere to live.
The Back to Earth Initiative shows Victorians where their food and green waste goes after it is composted. Tim Missen, a fourth generation dairy farmer in Gippsland, has been using compost on his farm for six years. He’s seen a major difference in his soil which means his cows are healthier and happier. Watch Tim explain how compost has been great for his farm which means we all benefit from the great food he produces.
Food waste is the second biggest type of waste sent to landfill, which is why more and more councils are accepting food waste in green bins. Across Victoria, 59 of 79 councils collect green waste. Of those 59 councils, 35 councils already accept food waste or are trialling food waste collection in their green bins (15 in Melbourne, 20 in regional Victoria).
World Soil Day is held annually by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation, to highlight the importance of healthy soil and sustainable management of soil.
For more information, visit: backtoearth.vic.gov.au
We're proud to be working with these councils:
- Glen Eira
- Greater Dandenong
- Macedon Ranges Shire
- Mornington Peninsula
- Yarra Ranges
Last updated: 18/02/2020