Most businesses generate "waste" products that should be recycled, if only to prevent harmful chemicals entering our food chain.
We have concentrated, extracted and combined raw natural elements into new and unique elements such as plastics, aluminum, mercury and acids. Recently we have realised that to use these resources efficiently and avoid them spoiling the environment, we need to create closed loops that allow us to move these technical materials from one use to another in the same way nature cycles nutrients, water, or energy throughout its ecosystems. In this manner we need to see one business's technical waste as the feedstock for another's business's technical process and product.
Recycling plastics, paper, metal, and glass are all steps in this direction. The end point is that all man-made products and materials are able to be recycled and reused.
If your workplace doesn't have a recycling program in place follow these steps to create one:
The Australian Government in partnership with the lighting industry has developed and launched Fluoro-cycle, a scheme aimed to increase recycling rates for mercury-containing globes.
E-waste can be recycled, however, before deciding to send your old computer to a recycler, consider donating it to a community group, local charity, school or family member. If you can't usefully pass it on, these organisations may be able to help:
In order to reduce the strain our ongoing consumption is putting on the environment, we need to use less and use it many times (ideally, perpetually). Creating closed loops by recycling all that we can moves us in this direction.
In 2002-03, Australia generated approximately 32.4 million tonnes of solid waste, or about 1.7 tonnes per capita. Approximately 60 per cent of this waste is buried in landfill. This represents a huge ongoing loss of invested energy, extracted resources and natural services that could otherwise be recycled back into other man-made products and materials.
Recycling of toxic chemicals, radioactive materials and other non-biodegradable materials is the alternative to attempting to store them in landfill facilities. Inadequate disposal of these materials has allowed many man-made toxins to enter the oceans and contaminate seafood. Mercury turns into its organic form, methylmercury, and accumulates in the tissue of tuna, swordfish and shark (large, old fish at the top of the food chain). Chemicals such as DDT and PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyl), dioxin, toxaphene, and dieldrin can accumulate in fish (especially farm-fed fish) and are all suspected to cause cancer in humans.
Upper Hunter Shire Council is a local government authority and provides an extensive array of services including health and building; town planning; aged care; sporting and recreational facilities; roads; libraries; garbage collection; airport facilities; saleyards; public venues; water; children, youth and families and tourist information.