Not all rubbish is rubbish

Population growth and increased consumption will see a large increase in the amount of household rubbish created in Melbourne’s south east. In fact, our modelling shows that by 2046 around 700,000 tonnes of household rubbish will be produced.

Landfills in the area are filling up and no more are planned to be built. That’s why we’re looking at smarter ways to deal with household rubbish.

The average rubbish bin contains materials that could be put to better use than burying it in the ground and, understanding what’s inside our rubbish bins is just as important as predicting how much rubbish we will produce. This is to ensure the technology and scale of a new advanced waste solution is appropriate.

Between October 2019 and February 2020, MWRRG conducted waste audits to understand more about what makes up the average household rubbish bin. These audits looked at samples of rubbish bins from more than 580 households across 12 councils over two fortnights.

Data from the samples showed a significant amount of household rubbish sent to landfill could be recovered, including:

  • food and green waste
  • metals (ferrous and non-ferrous)
  • hard plastics and paper/cardboard.

New waste processing facilities have the potential to increase recovery of resources that would normally be destined for landfill and what is left over can be used to produce heat or electricity. A new facility will also create jobs and reduce the distance waste is transported.

Councils are using this data to help find an alternative to landfill to achieve better financial, environmental and social outcomes for the community.



Last updated: 15/09/2021