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Recycling Begins at Home

We live in an increasingly disposable society, where goods are built to die. As a consequence, our world is overflowing with rubbish. You can reduce your contribution to this rapidly increasing trash pile and decrease your trash footprint. The best way is to recycle: you will help decrease pollution and greenhouse gasses and ensure animals do not lose their habitats. Read on for practical ways to start recycling at home.

Start With Yourself

The easiest way to start recycling is to look at your own habits. Look at the goods you use at home – this is the potential recyclable waste you have control over. The next time you buy groceries or something new (i.e. a mobile phone, printer cartridge, ream of paper, etc.) be conscious of the items you would usually throw away that can, in fact, be recycled.

And once you are comfortable recycling your own things, you can expand your sphere of influence. Lead by example and you may influence your friends and neighbours to recycle.

Identify Items to Recycle at Home

All you need to start recycling at home is a basic knowledge of what can be recycled. Here are some common household items:

  • Old newspapers, magazines and books
  • Junk mail
  • Waste paper
  • Paper packaging (including cardboard)
  • Plastic bottles and containers
  • Glass bottles and containers, and;
  • Old mobile phones, computers and laptops, among many others.

Collecting Items for Recycling at Home

After identifying recyclable items, you need to sort them by type.

All unwanted paper and glass materials can be grouped together. However, as not all plastic items are readily recyclable, they should be organised according to their types.

Plastic is non-biodegradable, and takes thousands of years to decompose. Despite this, plastic is the most commonly disposed product, and is a leading cause of pollution.

The following types of plastic are readily recyclable:

  • Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) – Commonly used in soft drink bottles and food containers
  • High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) – HDPE is used to make beverage bottles with a short shelf-life (i.e. milk and juice). It is also used for bottles containing household chemicals (i.e. detergent, shampoo and conditioner). It is also used to construct pipes, buckets, pens, sheets and doghouses.
  • Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) – Rigid PVC plastic is used to make bottles, pipes and fittings, among other things. And flexible PVC is used in wire and cable insulation.
  • Polystyrene (PS) – PS is used to manufacture rulers, foam packaging, plates and cups, among other things.

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Trash and Recycling Facts

This is an infographic depicting interesting facts and figures about the amount of trash produced per person in various countries. We have plenty of work ahead of us to reduce the amount of stuff we toss out. Always consider recycling and purchasing recycled material. Thanks for your help!

Trash and Recycling Infographic

Infographic authored by ROUND2 INC., an Avnet Company specializing in computer recycling. To view the original post, check out the original Trash and Recycling infographic.

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Melbourne Recycling

Most of our business is done directly with businesses in search of economically viable waste management solutions. We also work with local governments to provide guidance on trends in waste management.

Recently we spent time with the Melbourne Council discussing options for designing recycling chutes for multi-story dwellings and office spaces.  We provided them with cost effective solutions for installing chutes in new construction as well as for retrofitting existing structures.

As part of that time spent with the Melbourne Council, we took the opportunity to document their current recycling programs they offer to local businesses.  Here are some of the highlights.

Waste Management – City of Melbourne Garbage And Recycling Services

The waste your business generates must be disposed of properly. As a business owner or operator, you are responsible for arranging for this waste to be collected. Waste, including general garbage and recyclables, needs to be placed in appropriate bins or skips ready for collection.

Waste and recyclable material must only be collected from your business on days and at times approved by the City of Melbourne. A fine of $2,000 applies. For more information visit new city waste laws.

All rateable properties in the City of Melbourne are entitled to a:

  • garbage bin (80 litres or 120 litres)
  • recycling bin (80 litres, 120 litres or 240 litres).

These are collected weekly. See Bins for more information.

This service is mainly designed for households but can also be convenient for businesses that generate limited volumes of garbage and recyclables.  The bins must be stored indoors.

For more information contact the City of Melbourne on 03 9658 9658 or give us a call.  We have a comprehensive list of recycling providers.  We also can visit your location to provide a recycling audit designed to provide you with information to give you a fast start at establishing your own in-house recycling system.

Give us a call at 1800 025 073 or send and enquiry.

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The ECO Lift – Invisible Rubbish Bins

What could be better than having a community waste bin that is clean and convenient?  We thought about this question and came up with a solution that is convenient and invisible!

That’s the promise our ECO Lift systems keep by placing the storage part of the system underground.  The ECO Lift consists of above ground canisters and below ground waste containers.  The canisters above the ground are mock trash cans which are basically openings into which people drop their rubbish.   The bag falls into the bin which is housed underground.

The main storage bin is housed on a platform underground.  The platform is lifted by a hydraulic lifter which is engaged by an operator at the control box.  Standard waste management vehicles load the full containers onto the truck or trailer bed.  The load is taken to the landfill and then returned to the site.  Once back in place on the platform, the operator lowers the lift into its underground housing where is stands ready to collect the next load of rubbish.

The ECO Lift Small system is suited for smaller community implementations using 4 or 5 above ground canisters.  The ECO Lift Industry model is tailor made for shopping centres, stadiums, airports or even to share between adjacent businesses.

Click here to see the ECO Lift in action.  Does the eDiverter sound like a solution you need in your complex to support recycling?  Give us a call at 1800 025 073 or send and enquiry.

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Australia’s National Waste Policy

The Australian Government has been involved with creating policy for waste management for years.  The first statement was in 1992 titled “National Strategy for Ecologically Sustainable Development by the Council of Australian Governments.”  They have outlined 6 key areas in Australia’s National Waste Policy providing guidance and clarity for businesses and communities.

The six key areas that benefit from Australia’s National Waste Policy are:

  • Taking responsibility for reducing the environmental footprint of product and material consumption
  • Seeking out local technology and innovators who offer solutions for efficient and effective methods to repurpose waste resources
  • Pursuing sustainability to achieve broader environmental, social and economic benefits.
  • Reducing hazard and risk of waste handling and disposal
  • Increasing the capacity for local communities to manage waste and recover or reuse resources
  • Providing decision makers with meaningful, accurate and current national waste and resource recovery data so they can make informed decisions for waste management within their own communities

At Elephant’s Foot, our mission is to find ways to help communities embrace these areas of responsibility.  A prime example is the eDiverter system.  We invented the eDiverter specifically to help people living or working in large complexes to efficiently separate and store recyclable material from rubbish.

The eDiverter works in conjunction with an existing garbage chute and is installed in the basement area above the storage bins. There is a switch which controls the flow of rubbish and recyclable through the door in the basement.  The resident pushes the switch to control the direction of the waste: into the rubbish bin or into the recyclable bin.  This solution is so efficient and cost effective the Melbourne City Council incorporated the concept into their development and construction planning codes.

You can find Australia’s National Waste Policy and the National Waste Report at:



Does the eDiverter sound like a solution you need in your complex to support recycling?  Give us a call at 1800 025 073 or send and enquiry.

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New ECO weighing bin lifter

Elephants Foot & Pottinger have finished developing
and testing the new ECO bin lifter. We did this because of the overwhelming
request for clients such as shopping centres, who need to use bin lifters as
part of their day to day operations.

The ECO binlifter records user information just like our
ECO compactors. The ECO bin lifter weighs the bin and sends all the
user/transaction details to the online database. The owner can then review all
transaction details including who used it, time , weights and basic excel

All ECO information can be accessed via any personal computer
, smart phone or tablet. Android and Apple devices can download the Elephants
Foot app for instant access.

Attached are the photos from the trial unit Elephants
Foot & Pottinger have been monitoring since April last year.

We will know more about the price in the next 2
weeks.  The bin lifter will not be bricked in like the attached (although
on request we can) , it will be caged in like our standard units in Australia
(final product photos coming soon).

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PET Recycling – Not Intended for the Family Pet

PET recycling isn’t some method used to trade in the family kitty or doggy for a new one.  PET recycling is about turning a plastic water bottle into a new product thereby keeping it out of landfills. This is one area where consumers can make a tremendous contribution to reducing waste deposited in local landfills.

Unless you are in an industry that deals with high volumes of waste and recycling products, you probably wondered what the topic of this article referenced.  PET or PETE is an acronym for Polyethylene Terephthalate which is a polymer resin that is part of the polyester family.

Plastic water bottles are the most recognized product of PET as a consumable.  However, you can find PET used in a number of applications including synthetic fibres, food, alcoholic beverages, edible oils, detergents and pharmaceuticals.  Bottles are an easy to recognise PET product.  However, it is estimated that over 60% of the global production of PET is used in the manufacture of synthetic textiles. Bottle production accounts for about 30 percent of the PET produced.

The challenge presented by PET products, especially bottles, is that PET is inert and takes an incredibly long time to degrade.  The bottles take up a tremendous amount of space in landfills.  Crushing them reduces the volume, but doesn’t improve the time for them to disintegrate.

PET recycling centres take PET products and shred them.  Most soft drink and water PET bottles are either green or clear and are stamped with a recycling number 1 on the bottom.  These bottles are shredded and broken down into small flakes.  This material is compressed into bales which are easy to store or transport.  The plastic flakes are processed and eventually turned into new products.  One of the uses for recycled PET bottles is raw material for polyester fiber.

If you are affiliated with a company looking for innovative methods to reduce waste sent to landfills, contact us for a consultation regarding shredding and compacting solutions suitable for your business.  We offer several solutions for shredding plastics, pallets, paper and other recyclables.  PET recycling starts with Elephant’s Foot Recycling!  Contact us today to learn more. 1800 025 073

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Recycled Plastic Bags – What They Become

It’s surprising how quickly those plastic bags accumulate at home and even at the office.  You may not realize it, but recycling plastic bags is one of the easiest ways we can reduce our impact to the environment.  Plastic bags are recycled into a number of products.

Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

One way to reduce your use of plastic bags is to pack along a “green” friendly NWPP bag (non-woven polypropylene) to tote groceries home.  These bags often come branded with your favourite charity or company logo.

Recycled plastic bags end up being reused in some surprising applications.  The hard plastic created from recycled plastic bags is often found repurposed for use in the yard and garden.

  • Garden edging
  • Plastic stakes
  • Outdoor seating
  • Playground equipment
  • Fence posts
  • Decking

This weekend when you are looking for a way to do something environmentally friendly, take a few minutes to bag up your plastic bags and send them off for recycling.

If you operate a business that generates high volumes of plastic rubbish, Elephant’s Foot can help connect you with a local recycling company.  We also have compactors and balers suitable for many applications.  Give us a call at 1800 025 073 or send and enquiry.

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National Recycling Week – Recognizing Recycling As A National Effort

National Recycling Week is an event initiated 15 years ago by Planet Ark, an advocate of recycling and promoting the use of alternative products.  The goal of National Recycling Week is to bring more awareness on the ways people can take action to reduce their impact on the environment.  The activities and themes focus on minimizing waste and managing material resources to reduce the impact on landfills.

National Recycling Week is a highly-regarded annual education and behaviour change campaign program. It promotes environmental benefits in improvements of Australia’s industrial and community recycling programs.

Naturally, we think this should be more than a week-long celebration!  Elephant Foot’s products and services are designed to help businesses live up to community promises for operating in a sustainable manner.  If you work for or own a company seeking new methods for reducing the sheer mass of rubbish generated by your processes, we can help.

Ask us about our free onsite recycling and waste analysis. This report recommends methods for reducing the waste sent to landfills, incorporating recycling into the company work flow and ways you can turn waste into a new income stream.  Instead of paying thousands for rubbish disposal you can turn it into revenue! Contact us today to learn more. 1800 025 073

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Get Out From Under Stacks of Smelly Beer Bottles By Recycling Glass

The beauty of recycling any product is that it means returning discarded materials to a new purpose.  Recycling glass is a perfect example where bottles, glass and jars are “rehabilitated” into a new use.  Recycling glass turns useless glass containers into new bottles and jars.

Before glass can be recycled it first must be collected.  Our Bottle Buster provides a great solution for any business wanting to get out from under stacks of empty beer, wine and soda bottles. Glass goes through a series of steps before recycling turns it into a new product.

First, the glass has to be collected before haulers can take the material to a recycling plant.  If you operate a restaurant or any facility that generates a lot of glass bottle waste, then consider installing a Bottle Buster on your facility to support glass recycling regaining precious storage space.

Benefits of using the Bottle Buster for your glass recycling efforts are realized immediately.  Our Bottle Buster system was designed especially for clubs, casinos, restaurants and hotels to help free up space generated by storing the bulky bottles.

The most obvious benefit is the space currently taken up by storing cases of beer or wine bottles is immediately freed up. Getting those bottles out the back office storage also means that the smell of stale beer, wine and beverages is removed, too.  The task of crushing the bottles can easily and safely be completed by one employee.  You’ll also appreciate how quietly the system crushes dozens of bottles in short order.

To learn more about recycling glass in your facility, contact us today for an onsite review and recommendation.  Call 1800 025 073.

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Elephants Foot
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Latest Posts

Recycling Begins at Home

We live in an increasingly disposable society, where goods

Trash and Recycling Facts

This is an infographic depicting interesting facts and figures

Melbourne Recycling

Most of our business is done directly with businesses

The ECO Lift – Invisible Rubbish Bins

What could be better than having a community waste