Heading off to the beach this summer? Whether you're going boating, having a picnic or going camping, take care of our beautiful natural environment by taking care of your waste.
Last chance today to make your submission on phasing out a list of the worst of the single-use plastics. Take 5 minutes - do it now! Click here: https://consult.environment.govt.nz/waste/plastics/
Proposal one is a phase out of hard-to-recycle plastic types like polyvinyl chloride (plastic type 3) food and beverage packaging, polystyrene food and beverage packaging and expanded polystyrene (plastic type 6), and all oxo-degradable plastic items.
Proposal two seeks feedback on phasing-out more single-use plastic items like produce bags, drink stirrers, non-compostable fruit stickers, tableware, some cups and their lids, cotton buds, and straws.
There's heaps more information on the link above if you want to delve deep into it.
Mahurangi Wastebusters is delighted to be working with Conscious Kids to present a pop-up adventure playground event in Wellsford's Centennial Park on Saturday 12 December. Kids have the opportunity to get creative with a whole lot of 'loose parts' i.e. junk, that has been rescued from landfill by Mahurangi Wastebusters.
Conscious Kids have been running these events all over Auckland and kids have enormous amounts of fun creating huts, carts, marble runs and much more out of junk. Check out this video: https://www.consciouskids.co.nz/junk-play
So parents, bring your kids along and hang out with them having fun with loose parts!
This event is sponsored by Auckland Council.
We are excited to announce we have started our compost project - turning waste from our community into beautiful compost which will be for sale in a few months' time. We are collecting compostable waste from the Matakana Farmers Market, tea from Daily Organics Kombucha brewery, green waste and food scraps, and layering it up with carbon material for a balanced compost. Anna Proctor and Ewan Briggs, our compost team, can be seen here putting a batch together.
Matakana Farmers Market has been a zero waste market since day one and were previously sending their waste all the way down to Tuakau to be composted, so we are stoked to be able to reduce the compost miles and process it right here in our community.
We are using The Carbon Cycle Co. compost boxes which are super efficient. A single Carbon Cycle composter can convert over 5 tons of organic matter into compost per year.
Good for the atmosphere
Good for the planet
Good for the people
Special Offer - drop off your food scraps for free at our Lawrie Rd Recycling Centre for the first 6 months! So if you're bringing a load of stuff over, bring your food scraps as well (but no rotten fish please!)
Collection box at the Matakana Farmers Market
Not being a sewer, I had a go at making a face mask from a pretty sock with a nice pink heal like I'd seen on the internet. The first time I wore it my friends hooted with laughter! So much for my efforts at creativity!
But luckily I have very talented and helpful friends who have made me some beautiful washable face masks using scraps of fabric from the very successful Fabric Rescue we held in Matakana in July. Thank you Sue Monk and Yuka.
Sue also made a selection of fabric face masks for our staff at our Lawrie Rd and Rustybrook Rd Recycling Centres. Not only are they more comfortable to wear but they are SO much better for our environment. There's heaps of patterns on line.
And you actually don't even need to sew a mask - you can make one out of a scarf or hankerchief and a couple of rubber banks. Check out Nanogirl's video showing us how https://zcu.io/ifNK
How many disposable masks have you started to see lying around in the environment? I came across a few lying in the gutters on my morning walk yesterday. I'm sure they weren't deliberately dropped, but mostly likely blown away or lost.
Disposable masks can only be used once and then need to be safely disposed of to landfill. They cannot be recycled - they contaminate recycling bins. And they cannot be flushed down the toilet either as they can cause a breakdown of our waste water and sewage system. Instead, they need to go into household rubbish, preferably wrapped in newspaper. This is especially important in the times of Covid19.
Better still, make your own, even if it looks silly like my pink nose job!
Not much growing in the garden? Try growing some sprouts in a jar. So easy to grow and ready in a few days. Convenient, nutritious, fresh, zero waste and zero food miles.
No special equipment needed – just a glass jar, a piece of cloth and a rubber band. Mung beans and lentil seeds work well for sprouting and can be economically purchased from bulk bin stores and there are some great tutorials on line. Bin Inn in Warkworth is open under Level 3 lockdown from 9 - 3 pm.
During Level 4 lockdown I think we all realised just how important community food resilience is! Having some food growing at home is extremely valuable. I have quite a big garden with lots of fruit trees, so am self-sufficient for fruit and vege over lockdown.
Not everyone can have a garden but even a few veges or herbs in a pot or on a windowsill are a great resource for a household. Or grow some microgreens in a seed tray.
New Zealand has a waste problem. We are disposing more and more waste into landfill.
Good news - the Government has just confirmed its plans to increase and expand the waste disposal levy over the next few years to divert material from landfill. It will use the revenue gathered from the waste levy for resource recovery and waste minimisation. This decision follows wide public consultation which supports this plan.
A bit of background:
In 2008 the Government passed the Waste Minimisation Act which included a Waste Levy. That meant that any waste sent to landfill incurred a charge of $10 per tonne. This charge is ludicrously low. Across the ditch in Australia, depending on the State, the waste levy is over $100/ tonne and in Europe it is much much more.
This money goes into a fund that is available for waste minimisation initiatives in communties. So far it has funded some amazing projects.
So zero wasters are celebrating the New Zealand government's decision to raise the waste in New Zealand over the next few years to $60 per tonne, because there will be much more money available for waste minimisation initiatives.
This will enable clever waste miniimisation ideas across the country to be supported, for example cardboard and plastic recycling plants and community resource recovery facilities. And in doing so, it will grow jobs, promote recycling and lower carbon emissions. A cause for celebration!
The Ministry for the Environment says "Increasing and expanding the levy will help recognise the real costs of waste, make it fairer for everyone and incentivise materials reuse and recycling rather than just ‘taking it to the tip’.
The proposed levy increases are likely to have a minimal impact on a family’s weekly budget. The Ministry for the Environment estimates that when fully implemented, the new levy could increase the cost of the weekly council kerbside rubbish bag by about 25c, depending on individual council decisions."
Congratulations to Yiwei Song for guessing the correct weight of our giant pumpkins - 186.05 kg! Well done! Yiwei is pictured here at Matakana Farmers Market with his prize, a basket of zero waste goodies worth $100. The pumpkins attracted such a lot of attention and were very popular with the kids who loved sitting on them!
We are delighted to have raised $391 in the competition, which will go towards our new composting project on site at Lawrie Rd. More details on that soon.
We're devoted to zero waste, and have wonderful local, wastebusters like Trish Allen, who will be sharing tips on reducing waste and keeping you up to date with what is happening at our Lawrie and Rustrybrook Road sites.