This year I’ve embarked on a low-plastic waste challenge for my family. Every fortnight I’ll be posting a low-plastic WIN that I’ve had in Alice Springs. Please email me at Rachel.email@example.com if you have any good ideas you’d like to share!
Solution: Changing mindsets
It’s taken me a long time to build up to this one… I’ve finally ditched the plastic liner of my kitchen bin. Why didn’t I do this years earlier? Mainly because it’s an engrained old habit, but to be honest, I have the remnants of a ‘germophobe’ inside of me. The good news is, it has been much easier than I imagined and fortunately, no dirtier.
The trick is keeping most of your wet waste out of the bin. With a good composting system or chooks, you can dispose of any ‘wet’ waste in the garden. If in doubt, just dig a hole in the garden (for that soup that just didn’t work!). If you have any waste you’re worried about (eg. disposable nappies or sanitary products) you can wrap them in some newspaper and discreetly pop them in the wheelie bin.
To keep cleaning to a minimum, you can fold some newspaper in the bottom of the bin to absorb any excess moisture or go the whole hog and line the bin with newspaper. I’m still only rinsing my kitchen bin every fortnight, so it hasn’t meant any increased cleaning.
Did you know that when the NT Container Deposit Legislation was introduced, bin liner sales went up from an estimated 8 million bags per year to 22 million bags per year (Rawtec, 2014). The overall policy still saves 10 million plastic bags per annum, but anything we can do to lower our consumption of bin liners is a good thing.