Little food scraps making a big difference

Little food scraps making a big difference
Written by City of Sydney
Thursday, 03 November 2022

The City of Sydney has committed to meaningful action on climate change, setting a bold goal to be net zero by 2035.

A big part of reducing our overall emissions is finding solutions that address the amount of waste that ends up in landfill.

Food scraps make up around a third of what people in our area put in their general waste collection bins, and when that kind of rubbish makes its way to the tip it rots and emits methane.

City of Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the food scraps recycling program has more benefits than drastically reducing the release of this potent greenhouse gas.

“Instead of ending up in landfill, food scraps are sent to a facility where they’re converted into compost for farms and gardens,” the Lord Mayor said.

“This is a great outcome and delivers on our goals of having a more circular economy. Instead of generating methane, these food scraps have become more than 530 tonnes of compost that’s helping enrich gardens and farms.”

The City of Sydney is working with other council areas as well as the NSW Government to work towards diverting 90% of residential waste away from landfill by 2030.

Food scraps can also be converted into energy to power homes or fertiliser to help grow more food.

“Our goal is to provide solutions that will help people responsibly dispose of their waste, and for that waste to become a commodity that will help fuel and nourish our communities.”

The City of Sydney is currently working on ways to transition the food scraps trial into a broader program that’ll deliver more benefits to our community.

Little food scraps making a big difference - Sydney

(Image credits: City of Sydney)

Amid rising food demand and prices, cities must take urgent action to reduce and repurpose food waste to provide food security for their residents while simultaneously achieving economic opportunities and emission reduction. The Urban Eats campaign is mobilizing cities towards a more circular and resilient food system by: 1) creating value out of food waste, 2) redistributing excess food, 3) producing more locally, 4) promoting food habit change among city residents and businesses, and 5) strengthening collaboration across the whole food value chain. Through the sharing of city stories such as Sydney’s initiative to create value out of food waste, we hope to help you consider simple yet diverse ways to manage food waste in your city. Want to inspire other cities with your story? Get in touch with llim@r-cities.org.

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