Western Australians are great people, and we live in one of the best places in the world. But we have a problem - a big problem - and it’s something that affects us all.

We create too much waste.

Waste is anything left over that we put in our bins or out on our verge for collection on a weekly, fortnightly, quarterly or annual basis.

Infographic: the average WA Household sends 18kg to landfill each week or the equivalent of a four year old child, 18 litres of milk, 180 bananas or a standard sized microwave

A typical household creates about 28kg of waste each week. Only about 10kg of this is recycled, the rest is sent to landfill.

In fact, our waste problem is so bad that, on average, our households are generating around 20% more waste than the national average.

Infographic: Our households produce 1454kg of waste a year, including 100kg of plastic packaging

The decisions we make at home all add up, and together the impact is significant – with each Western Australian generating an average of 1.6kg of waste every day of the year!

Infographic: Per person, per year in Western Australia, Perth Metro produces 539kg and Regional WA produces 685kg of rubbish, recycling and green waste

And unfortunately, less is recycled here in WA than what you probably think. This is why, along with recycling correctly, reducing your consumption and reusing what you have are such important ways to own your impact.

Infographic: What waste do we recover? Perth Metro: 40%, Regional WA: 26%. Green waste: 30%, paper and card: 22%, organics: 19%, glas: 13%, steel: 5%, plastics: 3%, wood: 1%

Our love of coffee and complacency about other single-use items like plastic bottles, straws and plastic packaging isn’t helping either.

Infographic: Everyday in Australia we discard 10,000,000 plastic straws, 2,700,00 coffee cups. In Western Australia, cigarette butts, drink containers and takeaway food packaging make up 70% of the wate on our beaches. Drink containers make up 35% of our litter. Prior to the lightweight plastic bag ban around 5,000,000 plastic bags were littered each year.

We need to do more to reduce the waste we create at home, at work and when we’re out and about. Here’s why...

Infographic: Plastic (not so) fantastic. Globally 8.3 billion tonnes of virgin plastics have been produce in the past 70 year. 9% has been recycled, 12% has been incinerated and 79% is in landfill or our oceans. By 2050 there will be more plastic than fish in our oceans. 90% of seabirds regularly ingest plastic items. 50,000 single-use coffee cups (and lids) are thrown away every minute. Most go into landfill. Up to HALF of all plastic produced is for single-use items like straws, cutlery and bags.

And if that isn’t enough, consider the impacts on our natural environment and marine life.

Infographic: Waste generates odours, attracts vermin and spreads disease. It pollutes our ground water and kills our marine life and sea birds. Methane is produced by decomposing waste in landfill. It is 25% stronger than carbon dioxide (which our cars produce).

You can find the full Own Your Impact infographic on the Resources page.


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