Waste audit

It is not waste until we waste it!

kimk cartoon landfill site with Table Mnt july  2013

Grub’s up! Never mind the 7th Wonder, here come our 7 courses.

The landscape in our City is changing.  A hole has become a mound and is now a substantial hill visible from the sea and from kilometers away across the city.  Have you seen the same in your City – or where does your waste go?  Our city dump, euphemistically called the False Bay Coastal Park landfill has already filled the land allocated to it.  Fed with a steady stream of `waste’ generated by locals the landfill is now growing skywards!  Will this monument to wasteful consumption eventually need navigation lights to warn air traffic?  Home to Table Mountain the Seventh Natural Wonder of the World, my city, Cape Town is building a legacy landfill that will surely have future generations and archaeologists pondering the nature of our society!  And so should we – not for the sake of leaving an archaeological record, but simply to survive into the future as a civilized society.

Nature knows no waste – everything is recycled.  Modern human societies in contradiction with natural processes have a linear approach to the use of materials.  We extract or harvest resources, refine them into products, input energy and water, use and consume, dispose and pollute.  If ever the writing was on the wall – or in this case writ large on the land and circulating across the sea –  it is now.  The good news is that we know about diminishing resources, poisonous pollution and increasing costs and we now have the technology and systems to learn from Nature’s model of recycling.

Email mailto:kim@greenaudits.co.za for a home, school or small business waste audit

Go to Business Directory of Recyclers & Re users.

See below the list of  materials that are commonly dumped (wasted) and the environmentally responsible options of avoidance or re- use and recycling.   

MaterialsRe-Use
Y / N
Recycle
Y / N
Kilos per week put into refuseCommitment to avoid or divert from refuse
Paper & card
Printing & lettersY as rough note paperY0Only print what is needed.
NewspaperY0
MagazinesShare with friendsY0Share with friends
Card containersY0
Ribbed cardboardY0
Glass bottles & jarsY as storage containersY0
Tin & Alu cansY0
Plastic
Pet1 bottlesY0Use refillable beverage bottles
HDPE 2Y0
PVC 3infrequentlyAvoid. Difficult to recycle.
LDPE 4 bagsAs packetsY0
PP5Y as containersY0
PS 6 polystyreneY but not all PS6 is recycledLess than 1kgreturn to shop
No7 mixed plasticNot recyclableLess than 1kgreturn to shop
Food waste
Raw vegetablecompost
Cooked food incl meatWorm farm & bokashi bin
Cooking oilRecycled for diesel
Garden pruningsCompost & mulch
Hazardous waste
e-waste computers cell phones etcTo specialist recyclers
BatteriesBattery deposit binReduce by using rechargeable batteries
CFLs & Fluorescent tubesCfl deposit binPurchase LED lights
Chemicals e.g. paint, cleaning agents, pesticidesTake to Official Toxic waste drop off pointsFind safe alternatives to toxic chemicals