Plastic Packaging in Australia: What You Need to Know

There is a plague of plastic in Australia.

We package and wrap most items in plastic, whether that’s computers and tech gadgets, food from the supermarket, construction materials, and more. Unfortunately, the vast majority of this simply ends up in landfills. In fact, Aussies throw away about 1.9 million tonnes of packaging, every single year.

Put simply, plastic packaging and other forms of plastic waste are now a huge problem in Sydney, and the rest of the country. This plastic waste often ends up in our waterways, where it has a devastating impact on marine life. For instance, soft plastics in particular cause havoc amongst sea creatures.

Better alternatives are springing up, such as packaging made from cornstarch and other organic materials. However, the affordability of plastic makes it the popular choice. Unfortunately though, that means the environment suffers, as plastic ends up in (and out of) landfills.

Some facts and figures

We only recycled 4% of soft plastics each year, as of November 2021. Unfortunately, virgin plastic is much cheaper, which is a big reason as to why there is little demand for recycled plastic packaging among producers.

However, 86% of new plastic is made to be recycled. As the figures above suggest however, the amount of plastic that is actually recycled is much less. A mix of consumer inattention and it being more affordable to use new plastic than recycled plastics means most of this is dumped into landfills.

According the to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the average Australian consumer uses 130kg of plastic each year. Less than 12% of this plastic, which is primarily made up of packaging, is recycled.

Do your part as a consumer

Consumers must do their part in the war against plastic packaging. That means refusing plastic packaging where it’s not necessary, and ensuring you collect your soft plastics and take them to a designated recycling spot. These are usually available in large supermarkets.

However, there is a lot that large corporations and governments must do to make it easier for people to recycle, and to encourage them to do so properly. Advertising and education campaigns are a must, along with improved efforts to use recycled materials instead of creating virgin plastics.

Run a business? You need Sydney rubbish removal

Efficient waste management is not just essential for consumers and smaller, individual amounts of plastic packaging, but also for businesses all over Sydney. Businesses produce all kinds of waste, depending on their industry, the type of work they do and their business premises. For instance, a commercial business will likely produce a lot of office junk.

Dealing with larger waste items and larger amounts of waste requires a professional touch. This is because shifting items like office furniture, desks and large pieces of rubbish often requires the right equipment, as well as a commitment to health and safety. Sydney City Rubbish has both in spades.

For your Sydney rubbish removal requirements, get in touch with us now.

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