Waste is an issue. About 93% of the raw materials we use are thrown away during the production process, and about 80% of the stuff we buy is often thrown away after one use.
New Zealanders throw away more rubbish per person than people in most developed countries. The wealthier we have become the more we seem to waste.
The solid waste deposited in New Zealand landfills, from industrial and domestic sources combined, is over 3 million tonnes a year. Landfill is the principal means of disposal of rubbish in New Zealand.
In Marlborough we produce approximately 50,000 tonnes of waste annually.
That's enough waste each year to fill one rugby field 15 storeys high.
Marlborough District Council has an active waste minimisation programme to encourage residents to reduce, re-use, recycle and compost waste.
As well as the Recycling Centre, we run a Re-Use Shop at the Blenheim Resource Recovery site, an E-Waste facility and a hazardous waste drop-off centre.
We operate recycling at all of our transfer stations with the larger ones having more comprehensive facilities.
Kerbside recycling is in operation in Blenheim and Picton.
Council supports a greenwaste drop-off facility, operated by Greenwaste Acceptance Facility and composting at the Blenheim Transfer Station, and also offers discount vouchers on home composting, worm farming and EM Bokashi systems for households' compostable and kitchen wastes.
Finally, we have transfer stations that collect and then transport residual waste to the Marlborough Regional Landfill on Taylor Pass Road.
This landfill is a modern, engineered landfill that meets national standards for disposal of residual waste.
Landfills though are really holding zones as little will break down in them.
So getting to know what's in our waste and how to reduce, recycle and re-use it will help us to increase the life of our landfill and also encourage us to think about what we are buying so we use our resources carefully.
For further information and activities, download the Waste Kit or contact us for a guided tour of the Resource Recovery Centre.
The Waste Kit
What can you recycle locally? Check out our local recycling update.