In April of this year, Dubbo Regional Council (DRC), Mid-Western Regional Council, and Narromine Shire Council received a grant from the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) to participate in “Scrap Together”, a community program to educate residents about what can go into their Food Organics and Garden Organics (FOGO) green-lid kerbside bin. Processing organics benefits the environment and the community by allowing much greater recovery of resources and reducing the amount of organics going into landfill.

To help raise awareness, a locally relevant video has been produced to assist residents in understanding how their organics waste is transformed into compost. Explaining what happens to our waste can help us to make more informed and considered choices when disposing of materials.

In the YouTube video, “Dubbo Regional Council – What happens to kerbside organics”, viewers can see how green bin contents are transformed into compost at the DROPP (Dubbo Regional Organics Processing Plant). The video explains the many benefits of compost, including improving our soil so we can grow better food and our land and plants can become more drought and disease resilient. We learn that “Good land needs good soil, good soil needs good compost, and good compost starts with the green bin”. 

In the video, workers at the DROPP remove any bad scrap (such as metal, glass, and bottles) by hand, and the good scrap (food and garden organics) is shredded into smaller pieces before going into temperature-controlled tunnels. After 14 days, the organic material leaves the tunnel and is placed in big rows outside for three months, where it continues to break down and is regularly turned, checked, and tested to meet Australian composting standards.

From June 2021 to June 2022, 11,454 tonnes of food and garden organics were diverted from landfill and processed into Australian standard compost at the DROPP.

The video can be viewed on Council’s YouTube, social media platforms, Council’s website and will be used in the primary and secondary waste and sustainability education programs delivered by Council across the region.

As part of the campaign, Dubbo Regional Council’s Resource Recovery Education Officer, Felicity Lochhead, has also hosted successful pop-up stands at local events, including the Dubbo Show and Wellington Show, providing Council’s free kitchen caddy liners for collecting food scraps, educating attendees about where our food scraps go, and providing some fun educational material about food scraps for kids in the Dubbo region.

John Wisniewski, Dubbo Regional Council’s Manager Resource Recovery and Efficiency says, the video will help residents to understand exactly what happens to their food and garden scraps. “The process doesn’t end when they put their scraps into the bin and the truck picks it up. At the DROPP people are involved in cleaning garbage out of the food and garden scraps and the material goes through a process that produces a compost product that can be put into gardens or on farms, effectively going full circle. That’s what a circular economy is all about,” said Mr Wisniewski.

The Scrap Together campaign aims to remind and educate households of the environmental and community benefits of turning food waste into compost and reducing what goes into landfill.

Last Edited: 28 Jul 2022

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