Wollongong City Council's FOGO (Food Organic and Garden Organic) bins are proving popular with locals, with early results showing hundreds of tonnes of waste are being diverted from landfill each month through the service.
Since the service was rolled out in late 2020, the council has recorded a drop in the monthly average of general waste collected from households.
"Four months prior to the rollout of FOGO, we were averaging up to 3,540 tonnes of red bin waste per month entering our waste facility at Whytes Gully," a council spokesperson told ABC News.
"During the first four months of FOGO, the amount of waste to landfill dropped on average to 3,120 tonnes per month."
The council believes the introduction of FOGO services is behind the drop, diverting around 400 tonnes of waste per month, the equivalent of roughly 66 African elephants. Instead of rotting in landfill, this food and organic waste is now being returned to the earth in the form of compost.
Between December 2020 and February 2021, green waste also exceeded the amount of waste sent to landfill for the first time, a good indication that locals are making the most of the service.
"While it's still too early to understand changing trends with residents' behaviour, since the rollout of FOGO in November 2020, we've seen that FOGO has had a significant and positive impact on the amount of waste sent to landfill," the spokesperson said.
Building on this early success, the council is now planning to expand its FOGO collection to apartments.
All NSW residents could soon join the FOGO revolution with the NSW Government recently announcing plans to provide food and organic waste collection services for every household in the state by 2030. If successful, this initiative would divert millions of tonnes of food and organic waste from landfill every year.
Positive Environment News has been compiled using publicly available information. Planet Ark does not take responsibility for the accuracy of the original information and encourages readers to check the references before using this information for their own purposes.