Back to Earth

The Goulburn Valley Waste and Resource Recovery Group (GVWRRG) is working with three municipalities across the Goulburn Valley in expanding and introducing a food and green organics service to their residents.

Greater Shepparton City Council currently offer a garden organics kerbside service to their residents. In late 2015 Shepparton, Moira and Strathbogie Shire Councils will be offering a third bin to their kerbside collections to pick up food and garden waste.

This new service is aimed to divert over 7,000 tonnes from landfill and greatly increase compost volumes in the region.

An integral part of the added service is a strong education and engagement campaign. The three councils have agreed to a collaborative approach in educating their communities. From this directive, GVWRRG has been aligning the councils with the ‘Back to Earth Initiative’ http://backtoearth.vic.gov.au/. The campaign (derived from the Metropolitan Waste and Resource Recovery Group) will provide a suite of communications and social mediums to educate the community on the value of the green organic service.

In addition, by undertaking a joint process and pooling resources rather than operating separately, councils achieve better value for money through collective procurement. A combined service also guarantees sufficient volumes of organic material to provide processors with the incentive to invest in best practice organics processing technology.

The use of enhanced technology helps to maximise the environmental benefits of recycling organics and ensure facilities are best placed to meet the needs of the community now and into the future.

The objectives of the organics collection program are to achieve minimum contamination of the organic material collected from the kerbside and to greatly reduce organic waste ending up in landfill.

The main communications and engagement themes are to:

  • provide consistent messaging to promote correct use of the organics recycling service
  • promote and educate the community regarding the value of the in-house kitchen caddy
  • improve levels of knowledge about what can and can’t be placed in the organics bin
  • reinforce the importance of no contamination in the bin
  • promote the value of compost for the regional processing facility
  • increase awareness of the environmental benefits of organic recycling
  • increase confidence that materials are being recycled.