By Virginia Brunton, MRA Consulting Group
The case for organics
Australia has a significant and growing challenge in how it manages its waste. Tonnages continue to grow by a compound annual growth rate of 6.2%, six times faster than population growth, and 2.5 times faster than GDP growth. Landfill costs are increasing due to landfill levies and landfill scarcity.
Whilst we are doing well at diverting waste from landfill (the latest national data puts diversion at 58%), we need to do better. In particular, we need to target waste streams that are high volume and less expensive to address. As Figure 1 shows, one of the greatest opportunities is organics.
Figure 1: Economics of waste
Organics make up 53% of the typical residual waste bin (by weight). These organics are predominately food organics. This is the obvious waste to address, and the area of greatest benefit