Regional towns setting the bar for organic waste success

Published on 17 December 2018

4 year waste pic 2018.jpg

Over the past four years, four regional towns in northern Victoria have achieved organic waste results that are the envy of many regional and metropolitan councils.

"From day one our residents have kept contamination rates below 0.5% - that’s better than half the industry best practice goal of 1%. We think it’s an achievement our communities can be really proud of and is well and truly worth celebrating," said Moira Shire Mayor Libro Mustica.

Moira Shire Council introduced the organic waste service to the towns of Cobram, Nathalia, Numurkah and Yarrawonga just prior to Christmas four years ago and realised very early that the success of the service relied on the community.

"We can provide the bins, caddies, bags, trucks and all the communications and education programs in the world but we can’t control what happens inside our residents’ homes. We are absolutely thrilled with how our communities in Cobram, Nathalia, Numurkah and Yarrawonga have responded and the results are phenomenal."

"If the contamination rate is too high the organic waste can’t be processed into mulch which pretty much defeats the purpose of the service and creates additional fees that come back to rate payers," explained Mayor Mustica

Mayor Mustica said while he can’t pinpoint why the service had been so successful, "I think we can put it down to a really great local community."

"We put a lot of effort into designing and rolling out the new service – but so have many other councils and they haven’t seen the same results."

"We are a big part of Victoria’s food bowl and I think that common sense understanding of the environment and its importance to our local food production and economy has helped," said Mayor Mustica.

Waste management accounts for around 10% of Moira Shire’s annual expenditure.

"Finding ways to reduce costs for rate payers and protect our local environment and with it local food production makes sense - the organic waste service is one way we making this happen," said Mayor Mustica.

With several councils finding it a challenge to achieve 3-4% contamination rates Mayor Mustica said there was a further bonus.

"It feels pretty good to explain that our decimal place isn’t in the wrong spot – it just that our local communities are achieving results that are almost ten times better than theirs – it’s a healthy little competition to have!" said Mayor Mustica.

(Continues)

Media enquiries: Fiona Blick Email: fblick@moira.vic.gov.au Mobile: 0427 560 787

Moira Shire organics kerbside waste collection performance 2014 – 2018

Total volume of waste collected by Moira’s kerbside collection services (2014-2018): Kerbside waste services

2014 - 2018

Kerbside waste diverted from landfill (tonnes)

Organic waste contamination

(Best practice <1%)

Cobram

2889.49 t

0.37%

Nathalia

838.52 t

0.34%

Numurkah

2262.57 t

0.39%

Yarrawonga

4073.59 t

0.42%

Total

10,064.17 t

0.38%