Australians have become used to recycling, with most now regularly recycling newspapers, bottles, cans and cardboard packaging. But not everyone realises that most things are able to be recycled. Some rather bizarre items are being recycled, for example dentures and chewing gum! A not for profit organisation in Japan found a great way to fundraise by reclaiming metals like gold and silver from discarded dentures. The proceeds are donated to Unicef. An airport in England collects used chewing gum, sending it off for recycling into tyres, toys and other products. Kartaway are dedicated to diverting waste from landfill, recycling most of the waste they receive. Their public Recycling Depots in Melbourne and Adelaide will receive and recycle the following waste:
- green waste
- electronic waste
Some amazing examples of re-using materials can be found in some of the houses people have built around the world from recycled materials. A retired upholsterer, John Milkovisch, built a house entirely from beer cans in the U.S. and Édouard T. Arsenault built a house out of 25,000 recycled bottles in Canada.
Some more conservative structures have been built recently in the Netherlands and Utah, USA entirely from recycled materials. Two Architects from the Netherlands set about building their home from materials discovered in the area, they found recycled steel from an old textile mill which they used for the framework and some old cable reels provided the wood to complete the façade. In Utah a surprisingly modern and gorgeous home has been constructed from two disused silos.
To recycle your items look no further than Kartaway, call 1300 362 362 to order a skip or bin or visit their Recycling Depots.
Australians now see recycling as a way of life, committing to high levels of recycling. It is even more motivating when people understand how much energy is saved through their recycling efforts and the actual impacts upon the environment. Using recycled plastic to produce plastic products saves approximately 88% of energy compared to producing plastic from the raw materials of oil and gas. And what do they produce?
- garden edging
- sign posts
- compost bins
- speed humps
- plant pots
- picnic tables and park benches
- carpet fibre clothing
- automotive parts
- paint brushes
- plastic bottles
Using recycled glass to make more glass products saves 30% of energy. 1 tonne of recycled glass saves 1.1 tonnes of the raw materials sand, limestone and soda ash. Glass is 100% recyclable and can be recycled over and over again indefinitely, even millions of times. Refillable glass bottles are great savers of energy, using 19,000 BTUs of energy, compared to 38,000 BTUs for throwaway bottles. I recycled glass bottle saves enough energy to power four hours of an 100 watt electric light. Making aluminium cans from recycled aluminium saves a massive 95% of energy. One recycled aluminium can saves enough energy to power a TV for three hours or light a 100 watt bulb for 3.5 hours. As well as cans, aluminium is also recycled into aeroplanes and cars. Recycling steel makes some significant environmental savings, such as 74% savings in energy, 86% reduction in air pollution, 90% savings in virgin materials, 40% reduction in water use, 76% reduction in water pollution and 97% reduction in mining wastes. And what are steel cans and steel scrap made into?
- structural steel
- bolts and nuts
- coat hangers
- steel cans
Kartaway support these recycling efforts and run two public Recycling Depots in Australia, one in Melbourne and one in Adelaide.
Recycling rates in Australia have broken new records. A report has shown that 64.2% of post-consumer packaging has been recycled in 2013, a big improvement from the baseline of 39% established in 2003. In the 2013 Annual Report by the Australian Packaging Covenant, a voluntary organisation committed to reducing the environmental impacts of packaging, it was found that the recycling rate for recovered fibre packaging has also increased to a new record high of 78%. Glass is the most improved performer when it comes to recycling, with a massive increase to 128% in recycling tonnes since 2003. Plastics are recycled at the rate of 73% and paper/cardboard at 70%.
Commenting on the data, Vanio Calgaro, General Manager, APC, said: “The positive data coming from the report is further evidence that the current approach to increasing recycling and reducing litter is working. These results show that Australians are doing the right thing and that recycling has become a way of life. We hope to build on this great work in working towards our target of a 70% recycling rate by 2015”. Bringing government, industry and community groups together to find ways to address packaging sustainability issues, the Australian Packaging Covenant (APC) has worked tirelessly to reduce litter, increase recycling and encourage business to design more sustainable packaging.
Kartaway support all recycling efforts in business and the community. Supplying skips and bins to the public and corporations, Kartaway maintain a policy of recycling waste collected, wherever a facility exists to re-use or reycle the material. They also operate public Recycling Depots in Campbelltown, Adelaide and East Brunswick, Melbourne.
Plastic became very popular in modern life during the 1950s and has become a major material used in manufacturing, building and packaging throughout western civilisation. Since its adoption however, it has become a major contributor to landfill and, as plastic does not break down for hundreds of years, it became a major problem. The recycling of plastics began in earnest during the 1980s. Government programs, consumer education and the development of industrial processes to transform discarded plastic into useful materials have all contributed to less plastic going to landfill.
The introduction of PETE and HDPE plastics in the 80’s and 90’s transformed the recycling effort. This type of plastic is able to be recycled and carries the identifiable recyclable logo of three arrows depicting a triangle.
There are more steps required in recycling plastics than in recycling paper, glass and metals. Plastic requires the extraction of dyes, fillers and other additives. The first step in recycling plastic is to sort it by the type of resin used in its structure, of which there are seven basic types, and sometimes it is also sorted by colour. The second step is to chop the plastic into small pieces, then clean it to remove debris and small residue. It is then melted down and compressed into pellets, these are called nurdles. The nurdles are transported to plastic processing plants and introduced into the manufacturing process.
Kartaway are a leading recycling and waste management company in Australia. They are able to recycle most waste collected, including plastics. Providing bins and skips to households, builders, body corporates, shopping complexes, multi storey complexes and educational facilities they sort and recycle collected waste. Kartaway also operate Recycling Depots for the public in Adelaide and Melbourne.
Chinese millionaire Chen Guangbiao built his fortune through his recycling company, Huangpu Renewable Resources Utilization Group. At the same time, he has boosted his reputation in China with publicity stunts based on philanthropic acts or focussed on environmental messages, such as selling “canned air” in Beijing to raise awareness about ecological issues. He and his wife changed their names to Low Carbon and Green.
Chen began as an entrepreneur at an early age selling clean water to a nearby village, he went on to run several businesses before attending university. He became involved in the demolition of an old stadium in Nanjing. Coming up with the idea of selling the used iron, he hoped to make a profit as he was not being paid for the demolition. It turns out he had the right idea, he made a profit of $272,000!
He then established a recycling company, selling iron to iron and steel companies and recycling cement blocks back into concrete (by mixing with water, cement and sand). He found that all the construction waste could be transformed into at least seven types of building materials, such as landfill, red brick and building blocks. China produces 2 billion tons of construction waste, creating a rich market for recycling.
Kartaway in Australia came about from slightly different beginnings, with James Paul Whelan starting up a cartage company in 1892, gradually moving into demolition and sale of the second hand materials from the sites, and the famous Whelan The Wrecker was born. After a period of acquisition and growth the company became Kartaway and now run public recycling depots in Melbourne and Adelaide. Hiring bins and skips to the public and customising waste management programs for businesses and organisations the business focusses strongly on the recycling of most materials.
Chen Guangbiao has been in the world news recently as he makes a bid for a sizeable share in the New York Times. The Whelan family will probably not follow suite on Chen’s latest venture!
Kartaway recently announced the addition of the Hino 300 series truck, capable of servicing most medium to high density dwellings, to its Melbourne fleet.
With a rise in medium to high density housing within inner Metropolitan Melbourne providers of waste management services have run into difficulties providing effective waste collection services. Unable to access the bin rooms/areas due to restricted access and underground car parks many Waste Management Providers could only offer a reduced level of service. In order to guarantee a continuation of service quality to their Melbourne customers, Kartaway have introduced the newest member of its fleet, a new Hino 300 series truck, which has been affectionately dubbed “Junior”.
Mark Whelan, Director of National Operations at Kartaway said “It was evident that we needed a solution to allow us to continue delivering the best and most efficient possible service to our Melbourne customers. Having noted the Australian Bureau of Statistics findings that in 2010-2011 medium to high density dwellings accounted for over 90% of new building approvals in Inner Melbourne alone, and over 30% of Greater Metropolitan Melbourne we knew we had to act.”
Junior has a greatly reduced turning circle and, due to its dimensions, is able to service most underground car parks*. As well as accessibility to bin rooms in tight areas, Junior also offers a number of benefits including a reduction in excessive street noise caused by curb-side tipping and improved curb appeal, as bins can be collected from underground car parks rather than curbs.
Kartaway has operated for over 120 years and is a leader in the Waste Management and Recycling Industry. The company services Commercial, Residential and Constructions sectors through its Open Top and Rear Lift bin divisions. Call 1300 132 132 to talk about Junior with an Account Manager.
* For underground car parks with a maximum entry height of 2.05 metres.
Another fire caused by tyre stockpiling is linked to an accused murderer, Ron Medich. The Sydney Morning Herald reported on November 18th that the fire almost gutted a tyre dump in Sydney’s west and the company Carbon Polymers, part owned by Ron Medich, faces expulsion from the site. In New South Wales alone there have been 256 blazes over the past five years linked to tyres.
The issue of fires caused by tyres has concerned industry associations and the recent removal of tyre storage from Queensland’s Department of Environment Environmentally Relevant Activities (ERAs) in the Environmental Protection Regulation has been further cause for concern. The Environment Protection Authority is working with environment group Boomerang Alliance to reduce the number of toxic fires involving tyres.
Kartaway collect used tyres in Melbourne, Adelaide, Queensland and ensure that the tyres are then sent to bona fide recyclers. Unfortunately, a criminal element has crept into the market, offering cheap disposal of tyres. The unsuspecting customer is told the tyres are being stored temporarily but the used tyres are being stored in facilities not purpose built to offset the risk of long lasting “oil fires” generated by waste tyres. Unfortunately, most of these rogue operators do not recycle or dispose of the tyres responsibly and stockpiling has re-emerged. When disposing of tyres customers should be asking how and where the tyres are being disposed of. Kartaway customers can rest assured their tyres will be safely recycled. CEO of the Australian Council of Recycling, Grant Musgrove in his submission to the Department of Environment has stated “It is important that regulations are in place to ensure operators that charge customers to collect tyres for recycling do actually recycle or dispose of the tyres without negative impacts on the environment and to human health.” He advises that the environmental costs of these fires is high – waterways, soil and the air are all affected adversely, also posing a risk to human health.