Groundswell of zero waste living


Australia is getting ready for Plastic-Free July – the countdown started today with a major supermarket chain stopping its handing out free single-use plastic bags.

In The Sustainable Hour on 20 June 2018, we talk with Linda Grant, an education officer based in Hamilton for the Barwon South West Waste and Resource Recovery Group, who has also started a zero waste group in South West Victoria called War on Waste Southern Grampians – and Katie Traill and Meg Odgers from Towards Zero Waste Geelong.

Before they enter – 16 minutes in – Colin Mockett’s global outlook takes us from Scandinavia over India to a festive event at Rokewood Hotel, where Pat Simons from Yes2Renewables gave a speech as the local community celebrated World Wind Day on 15 June 2018.

“Every journey starts with one step. So just take that one step. Make it something sustainable. And just keep taking a next step. Once you do go, you will want to take the next step. It is a bit addictive.”
~ Linda Grant, education officer, in The Sustainable Hour


Join the challenge and ‘Choose To Refuse’ single-use plastic during July

Plastic Free July has grown from a handful of participants in Western Australia in 2011 through to millions of participants across more than 150 countries worldwide today.

Imagine a world without plastic waste. That’s Plastic Free July’s mission: to build a global movement that dramatically reduces plastic use and improves recycling, worldwide. ​Will you join the campaign and give up single-use plastic this July?

» Accept the challenge

» See the list of Plastic Free July events

Geelong Plastic Freedom event
On Wednesday 25 July 2018 at 5:30pm at Beav’s Bar, Geelong Sustainability organises a Plastic Free July Challenge & Workshop where you can listen to case studies from locals who’ve taken up the challenge and learn how to make beeswax wraps, paper bin liners, deodorant and recycle right plus more.



Listen to The Sustainable Hour no. 221 on 94.7 The Pulse:

» To open or download this programme in mp3-format, right-click here (Mac: CTRL + click)

  » Subscribe to ‘The Sustainable Hour’ podcast via iTunes




 LISTENER SERVICE: 

Content of this hour

Links, excerpts and more information about what we talked about in this Sustainable Hour


An hour about “plastic bag ban” versus “plastic freedom”, meaningful waste and sustainable energy with Scandinavia topping the global lists, the Norwegian push for all domestic aircrafts to be electric by 2030, and the British push for all cars to be electric by 2040, how a carbon fee drives clean energy, local initiatives with plastic bags, recycling of soft plastic, Religion Earth, Catholic immorality – if the Pope can do it, you can too – a Danish bicycle study shows how much your cycling benefits the community, a three-minute song on plastic, the principle of taking small steps, workshops ahead, and in this moment of change – be the change!


Websites Linda Grant mentioned during the hour:

» www.plasticfreejuly.org – Join over two million people from 159 countries in Plastic Free July and change your plastic habits, one at a time. Also connect with www.facebook.com/PlasticFreeJuly

» www.boomerangbags.org – Find your nearest Boomerang Bags group or start one yourself

» www.boomerangalliance.org.au – Sign the petitions – Cash For Containers in Victoria

» www.surfcoast.vic.gov.au/Environment/Sustainability/Plastic-Wise-Program – The Surf Coast Shire Plastic Wise Program and resources

» www.1millionwomen.com.au – Women and girls from every corner of the planet building a lifestyle revolution to fight the climate crisis. Join the movement!

» www.geelongsustainability.org.au – Grassroots, practical action to assist people on their sustainability journey. Check their Zero Waste page

» www.geelongaustralia.com.au/recycling – Links to recycling information for City of Greater Geelong

» www.bswwrrg.vic.gov.au – Barwon South West Waste and Resource Recovery Group

» www.tangaroablue.org – Tangaroa Blue, resources to assist with marine plastic pollution projects


Hey there, Geelong cafés! . . #Repost @responsible_rachel with @get_repost ・・・ Join @responsiblecafes to raise awareness of @plasticfreejuly with Trash 4 Treasure! ☕️ We have reached out to our amazing Responsible Cafes around the country and we have Cafes dotted across the country joining Trash 4 Treasure by providing a FREE hot drink if you pick up a bucket of trash from your community every Saturday in July. ☕️ Are you a Cafe that wants to be involved? Go to the website . ☕️ Are you a customer who wants to get their local Cafe on board? Please tag them below and let them know next time you visit. #plasticfreejuly #RCTrash4Treasure #freecoffee #coffee #plasticpollution #marinelife #waste #waronwasteAU #responsiblecafes #responsiblerunners #recycle #reuse #reduce #REFUSE #zerowaste #plasticfreeshopping #banthebag #purpose #impact #oceanconservation #loveocean #ocean #imnomug #byomug #geelong

A post shared by Towards Zero Waste Geelong (@towardszerowastegeelong) on


» Medium | Ensia – 11 July 2018:
Our clothes are contaminating our planet with tiny plastic threads
“Minute fibers shed from synthetic textiles are polluting oceans, streams, rivers — even the air we breathe — with unknown consequences.”



Websites and workshops Katie and Meg mentioned:

Towards Zero Waste Geelong on Facebook and Instagram

Intermediate #zerowaste workshops! 🙋🏼 @plasticfreejuly is just around the corner 🙈 We are talking clothing, food, makeup, nappies, recycling, DIY recipes, periods, shopping, you name it! 🌙 We also have a different special guest sharing their knowledge on each night. Plenty of Q&A time in both sessions, plus receive a $10 voucher to @valeriespantry if you purchase tickets to both sessions 🌿 Get in quick as spaces are limited this time round! Snacks and tea provided 🤤 Tickets via www.seedblog.net/workshops 👏🏼 . . #towardszerowaste #towardszerowastegeelong #plasticfree #plasticsucks #shopping #buyinbulk #buylocal #supportlocal #smallbusiness #wastenot #workshops #consciousliving #slowliving #bethechange #forthefuture #environmentalist #fortheplanet #climatechange #mothernature #geelong

A post shared by Towards Zero Waste Geelong (@towardszerowastegeelong) on

Katie Traill: About Towards Zero Waste Geelong

“Let’s work towards a Zero Waste Geelong!”

» Share this video on Facebook




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Waste is in the air

When zero waste makes business better




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Towards a zero waste model for Australia

“Waste represents a profound design failure in our society. Failing to create materials and products that can be safely reused, recycled or composted is leaving a legacy of waste – a burden for future generations to carry.”
~ Zero Waste Oz



“Doing good things for the environment”

“We’ve done a lot of research on what our customers want to see from us, and one of the issues they do want to see is leadership in the area of the environment. So [it’s] driven by our customers but also by our concern and commitment to building a greener, more sustainable Australia. It isn’t a money-making proposition, it had been one of the things that’s been said out there, nothing could be further from the truth. And to try and dispel that, we’ve got our 99-cent Bag for Good. All profits from that bag will go back to Junior Landcare and really help communities in Australia build more activism by the youth around doing good things for the environment.”
~ Brad Banducci, Woolworths chief executive

» News.com.au – 20 June 2018:
Major plastic bag ban warning
“As the plastic bag ban kicks in across the country, Woolworths customers are being warned there is “no excuse” to do this.”



» SBS – 21 June 2018:
Going plastic-free in July is easier than you think
“Plastic Free July reminds us that raging war on plastic can be as simple as starting with one habit at a time.”


Research about reusable bags

“The first thing you need to know if climate change or water scarcity are your concern is that you’ll need to use your canvas bags about 100 times before you’re ahead of single-use plastics.

With the writing on the wall, we can either pay for heavy-duty plastic bags, or start bringing our own.

The research says the majority of us will do the latter. In Tasmania, nine out of 10 shoppers used reusable bags to do their shopping after the bans came into effect in 2011, up from six out of 10.

Research has found that about 1 per cent of plastic bags used in Australia end up in the environment.

And if our heavier-duty bags reach the oceans and other habitats, they could cause as much if not more damage than single-use bags currently do. This is because heavy-duty bags can take longer to break down.

The ‘bin liner dilemma’
A review of the ACT ban in 2012 found that bin liner sales had indeed increased by 31 per cent a year after the ban came into place. Zero Waste South Australia put together a fact sheet on what they call “the bin liner dilemma”, and concluded there is no perfect answer. The best option they said, is to use no bin liner at all.”

The New Daily’s coverage

» The New Daily – 20 June 2018:
Plastic bags ban: Here’s how the alternatives stack up

» The New Daily – 21 June 2018:
What you really think about the plastic bag ban
“Overwhelmingly shoppers say the ban on single-use plastic bags was long overdue and is a positive step for the environment.”

“I’ll be honest with you, my first foray into environmentalism was based on economics. We had to get by on one income, so I went back to the frugal ways my migrant parents taught me.”

» The New Daily – 7 July 2018:
For Anita Vandyke, reducing waste is not rocket science
“Want to live a waste-free life? Let this rocket scientist turned ‘minimalist’ teach you how.”


» News.com.au – 22 June 2018:
Why I won’t be using green bags
“Switching away from single-use plastic bags has many wondering whether the alternatives are better. But there is one crucial factor.”



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Dermot O’Gorman, CEO, WWF-Australia, writes about this video:
“Woolies supermarkets are no longer giving out single-use plastic bags at their checkouts nationwide. This is great news and will help stop billions of plastic bags every year from being used for just a few minutes and then thrown away.

Convenience doesn’t have to cost the Earth, and while they’re handy, these bags are one of the greatest threats to ocean wildlife. Over time they break up into smaller and smaller pieces – ending up in our oceans and our marine wildlife.

Coles will be following suit and ban their bags on 1 July.

This is the perfect chance for us all to do a plastic audit and see where we can take steps to reduce our plastic use.

Many types of plastic we use daily can be easily swapped out with eco-friendly options, pretty much straight away. Here are some simple swaps to get you started.”

» WWF – 18 June 2018:
11 Plastic free eco-friendly swaps
“Going completely plastic free is hard, especially when so many of our daily essential items are made from plastic, or come in unnecessary plastic packaging. It’s also difficult to find sustainable options readily available and at our disposal.”

“Whether it’s bubble wrap, takeaway containers or used coffee bags, I’m constantly fielding questions like ‘can I recycle this?’ and ‘which bin do I use?’ My WWF colleagues and I are certainly not alone in wondering these things.

Australians want to do the right thing, but due to the complexity of the plastic multiverse and the sheer number of plastic products we use each day, we’re in a conundrum. Even with the best intentions, it’s easy to accidentally send valuable materials to landfill, or to contaminate truckloads of recycling.

Though there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution, here are a few tips that I’ve learned…”
~ Steph McCann, WWF-Australia

» WWF – 21 June 2018:
Trash Talk: A guide to recycling plastics



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Backyard movements of neo-peasants and stewarding the Earth
Soft plastic for recycling: One family, one year

Closing the loop
All the soft plastics that are dropped off at supermarkets are sent to Replas, a recycling company, where they are turned into products designed for outdoor use within the community.

» www.replas.com.au



In this Sustainable Hour, you heard Mik referring to…

• this blogpost about immoral Catholic church leaders:

Strong morality wake-up call for Catholic leaders in Australia





• this blogpost about the concept of ‘neo-peasants’:

Did you meet the neo-peasants who moved in next door?



Patrick Jones – the neo-peasant from Daylesford – is coming to Geelong to give a presentation at Geelong Sustainability’s Green Drinks event on Wednesday 27 June 2018.

Patrick’s talk is titled, ‘Radical homemaking and community-sufficiency: for post-money, carbon-positive wealth and well-being.’



• The new Religion Earth:

“The Earth is my religion”


Religion Earth founder Guy Lane introduces the new religion for the Anthropocene, Religion Earth

“It is about time that we humans stopped wasting our time and energy on gods, spirits, ghosts, and fairies, and turned our efforts to revering and repairing Mother Earth, or Gaia. Imagine if all the wealth of the old religions could be turned to fixing the problems currently faced by our Earth’s ecosystems.”
~ David Hood, Deputy Chairman, Beyond Zero Emissions

» www.religionearth.com



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IKEA goes circular

IKEA has committed to design its products “with new circular principles”, meaning that it will only use renewable or recycled materials in the future. Single-use plastics will be removed from all its stores and restaurants by 2020 and the corporation will endeavour to reduce its climate footprint by 70 percent per product.

“Our ambition is to become people and planet positive by 2030 while growing the IKEA business. Through our size and reach we have the opportunity to inspire and enable more than one billion people to live better lives, within the limits of the planet” said Inter IKEA Group CEO, Torbjörn Lööf. 

» Climate Action – 8 June 2018:
IKEA has added to its rich array of sustainability pledges by planning to become a truly circular business by 2030



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Norway leads the way towards the electric aircraft

“The first commercial routes using electric aircraft are expected before 2030, and hopefully Norway will be its testing ground. The Norwegian Air Sports Federation and Avinor band together to buy Norway’s first electric aircraft – set to be delivered in summer 2018. Avinor is working to ensure that Norway takes a leading role at an international level when it comes to electric aircraft, and is collaborating with partners in the aviation industry on a development and innovation project for electric aircraft.”

» Read more on www.avinor.no



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 #WINDWINS: 

Golden wind opportunity making plain common sense

Golden Plain Shire offers significant opportunities for renewable energy development, particularly for wind farms. As the Council writes that on its home page:

“The Shire is the ideal location for renewable energy production, with vast tracts of largely unencumbered land, attractive climatic conditions, and close proximity to the Victorian power grid.”

In 2017, WestWind Energy lodged an application for a planning permit with the State Government to build the Golden Plains Wind Farm near Rokewood in the centre of the Shire. This proposal would see the construction of the largest wind farm in the southern hemisphere with up to 228 wind turbines and a capacity of 800 megawatts – enough energy to power 500,000 homes.

Geelong hearing
The Golden Plains wind farm is currently going through the planning process. Submissions to the Environmental Effects Statement closed on 18 June 2018, and a hearing beginning next month in Geelong.

» Read more on www.goldenplains.vic.gov.au/renewable-energy and www.w-wind.com.au/golden-plains-wind-farm/


Wind: 400 direct jobs, 1,200 indirect

“The Golden Plains wind farm would be capable of producing the equivalent of somewhere between 1/4 to 1/3 of the average annual output of the recently closed Hazelwood coal-fired power station. It’s estimated doing that would save more than 3.5 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually by reducing reliance on fossil fuel generation. (…) It’s expected the wind farm will create 400+ direct jobs, 1,200+ indirect jobs and 50 ongoing jobs once operating.”

» Yes2Renewables – 18 June 2018:
Rokewood landowners & community members celebrate Global Wind Day as Golden Plains wind farm set for Geelong hearing

» www.yes2renewables.org




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 #DENMARK: 

Cyclists support their community with 75 cents for each kilometre they ride

The community gains 75 cent for every additional kilometre I ride on my bicycle, according to a new Danish study. If the Danes would cycle just 10 per cent more than they do today, then that would save society of 267,000 sick days, and AUS$23 million would be saved annually, the researchers found.

Not surprisingly, they also found that the Danish politicians are ready to allocate more money for cycling and construction of safe bike paths in their budgets.

The study was conducted by the consultancy firm Incentive for the Confederation of Danish Industries.

» Source (in Danish language): Dagbladet Information


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Colin Mockett’s global outlook

4: Plastic bags – Global index part 2

More segments:

Colin Mockett’s global outlook



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 #PLASTIC #MUSIC: 

The Formidable Vegetable Sound System




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 #BIOSPHERE #MUSIC: 

“Where is your sense of urgency?”


‘Save Ugly’ featuring Rosario Dawson

Published by Wilderness Society on Youtube.com on 19 June 2018

It’s not about the cuddly creatures — it’s the Ugly stuff that makes our living world go round. Find out how you can Save Ugly at ugly.wilderness.org.au

» Science – 1 May 2015:
Report: Accelerating extinction risk from climate change
“Predicting extinction in a changing world.”

» The Guardian – 28 December 2018:
Ice will return but extinctions can’t be reversed. We must act now
“We have to develop digital forecasts of species’ responses to climate change, design robust strategies to protect as many as possible, and help nature to adapt.”





 ADDITIONALLY: 

In other news

From our notes of this week: news stories and events we didn’t have time to mention but which we think you should know about


 #PLASTICFREEJULY: 

Kickstart a real plastic solution

Plastic campaigner from the Australian Marine Conservation Society, Jimmy Cordwell, wrote in the organisation’s latest newsletter:



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Where do I start?: 4 ways you can make a difference on climate


One of the most popular sessions at a Climate Reality Leadership Corps training is sustainability leader and Three Squares Inc. President Jaime Nack’s presentation on personal impact. Here she shares four ways you can have a powerful impact in your own life.

Individual Impact: Start the Conversation
Community Impact: Your Neighborhood
Industry Impact: Your Workplace
Global Impact: Your World

» Medium | Climate Reality – 21 June 2018:
Where Do I Start?: 4 Ways You Can Make a Difference on Climate



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Climate change: what can we do?

“1) Eradicate meat from our diets
2) Be careful in your methods of transportation
3) If you live in a democracy, vote responsibly and
4) Leverage the power of capital by divesting from fossil fuel companies and investing in clean renewables.”

~ Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change from 2010 to 2016, responding to the question, “What can we do?” at a symposium in Greece



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Get involved



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Acknowledgement

We at The Sustainable Hour would like to pay our respect to the traditional custodians of the land on which we are broadcasting, the Wathaurong People, and pay our respect to their elders, past, present and future.

The traditional owners lived in harmony with the environment and with the climate for hundreds of generations. It is not clear – yet – that as European settlers we have demonstrated that we can live in harmony for hundreds of generations, but it is clear that we can learn from the indigenous, traditional owners of this land.

When we talk about the future, it means extending our respect to those children not yet born, the generations of the future – remembering the old saying that…



The decisions currently being made around Australia to ignore climate change are being made by those who won’t be around by the time the worst effects hit home. How utterly disgusting, disrespectful and unfair is that?




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“Participation – that’s what’s gonna save the human race.”
~ Pete Seeger, American singer