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With a 3 bin system, many of you have indicated you're resistant to or don't plan on putting your food in the third bin for organic waste- where do you plan on putting it?

about 9 years ago

Many of you are in support of a third green bin for organic waste, yet have shown resistance to putting food waste in that bin for fear of vermin and odours. LMCC is interested in what you plan on doing with this food waste if a 3rd bin system is to be adopted...


  • Newport about 9 years ago
    I have been thinking about getting a worm farm to place food scraps into and then produce fertiliser for the garden. Worm farms are growing in popularity along with compost bins. I would do this to save the food scraps being placed in the new bins.
  • b sullivan about 9 years ago
    I don't understand why council would want to mix food waste with grass clippings or garden plants and then dispose of the mix where? The only thing that needs to be buried is the food waste. I would have thought food waste only to one bin and other waste separated, in which ever way it is convenient for easy disposal. We are asked where we would put food waste if we don't put it into the garden waste bin. Lets face it. It will go to the same place as engine oil goes now when there is no official and convenient place to put it. Wake up. Solve the problem in a practical way.That's what you are paid for. Just tell us what to do and put stickers on the bins to assist in sorting. But remember no one wants food waste sitting in a bin next to their back door for any longer that necessary. Does any one like maggots, rats or the smell of putrid flesh or prawns.
    • Project Leader about 9 years ago
      Mixing food and green waste in the same bin as is done with the 3 bin system Council is currently considering, is done to achieve diversion of waste from landfill. The more waste that goes to landfill, the more Council pays to the NSW Government for the Waste Levy. Additionally it is done to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, organic waste as it decomposes produces methane gas which is harmful to the environment. The mixed food and garden waste put in the third bin would be taken to an alternative waste treatment facility and treated and processed in enclosed tunnels and turned into a high grade compost which can then be sold. With the 3 bin system Council is considering, the 3rd bin for food and green waste would most likely be collected weekly to prevent hygiene issues.Whatever waste strategy is decided upon by Council will be followed by a robust education and awareness campaign on how to use the system and reduce waste.
      • b sullivan about 9 years ago
        If the green waste and the food waste can be turned into a high grade compost then that would be a good thing providing the cost of doing so is able to survive a tough economic analysis. This should take into account bin cost, collection cost, plant cost and the ongoing conversion cost. I'm sick of council officers wasting our money on what seems to them is a good idea even though it is not properly researched.
  • Earthworks about 9 years ago
    Food scraps can be composted with green waste to produce nutritious food for the garden. If you are reluctant to put scraps in the bin loose, just wrap them in paper with also helps make good compost. A sprinkling of garden lime on food waste will also keep vermin away.
  • Gyarran about 9 years ago
    If the decision is to implement a 3 bin system with green waste and food scraps going into one bin, then that's where we'll put it if we need to. It won't be any different to the current situation because the bin will have to be collected weekly so the concerns about vermin, odours, etc aren't an issue. The only difference is that we'll have a 3rd bin to worry about. In the meantime, we have 4 compost bins for our green waste and a worm farm for food scraps, etc so hopefully we won't need to put the 3rd bin out very often. We only need to put green waste in the bin after major pruning, etc or if a palm leaf has dropped. The worms seem to cope OK with small amounts of meat scraps etc so hopefully most weeks we won't have to worry about the 3rd bin. Hope LMCC takes that into account when they're working out the increased charges.
  • Elaine about 9 years ago
    If everyone recycles there would be no need for a third bin. My garbage bin currently gets collected with only one small bag in it. My mulch bin takes the majority of my whats left after the recycleables go into the current recycle bin. What is left?.....Plastic bags, meat bones, onions and citrus skins. These go into the garbage bin. Therefore, I still advocate that a mulch bin or worm farm provided to households is a much better option than a third garbage bin. Any food waste going into either the garbage or mulch can be wrapped in newspaper as this breaks down into compost and reduces odour.
    • Cookie about 9 years ago
      Hi ElaineI have a second compost bin for onions and citrus etc. I don't collect compost in the end, just keep topping up and add grass clippings now and then, but it still breaks down into the soil and feeds the garden around it. Saves putting in the garbage. I keep my "good" scraps for the chooks and better compost bin.
  • gtowell about 9 years ago
    When the project manager says many have support a third green bin. Can the project manager please support this with some supporting data. ie. statistics. Like questions people directly vote for and against a third bin. This forum currently good in which people can read and make people comments and then agree/disagree on comments.
    • Project Leader about 9 years ago
      The topics posted on this forum are driven by the discussion and issues raised within this forum. The support for a third bin as mentioned in this "discussion topic" is drawn from this online discussion forum. If you look back over the comments made in the various topics, you will find that there is much support for a third bin, alternatively, there is also support for the two bin system. You may find the following statistics interesting- at the community workshops conducted over 20 & 21 September, the majority of participants supported a 3 bin system... Statistics as follows: Three-Bin System 61%, Two Bin System 25%, Either Option, 17%, Neither Option 1%. What bin system would you prefer?
  • Cookie about 9 years ago
    My ideal bin system would be: small bin for general waste collected weekly. Large bin for recycling collected weekly and small bin for garden waste collected fortnightly or monthly. My kitchen waste goes to my two chooks or in one of my compost bins. Only need green waste for garden waste that can not go into compost. eg too woody or weedy. I find my general waste bin is only half full each week while my recycle bin is overflowing each fortnight and I have to put some of it into the general waste. Time we had a weekly recycle pick up.
    • Lil_jane about 9 years ago
      I agree with you , only I think it would be beneficial to have a large green waste bin not a small. The general garbage needs to be down sized to encourage those who do not already separate wastes. I often have surplus recycling that ends up in the garbage due to lack of space
    • KB1 about 9 years ago
      I also agree with Cookie. Recycling weekly, smaller general waste weekly and a green waste fortnightly in growing season, monthly in cooler months. Food scraps not in green waste - either compost, chooks or dogs. Rest of food scraps - wrapped and into general waste.
      • Project Leader about 9 years ago
        This suggestion is suitable for people who are able to do these things and who live on property with enough space to compost etc. Have you considered that some people are physically unable to compost or manage an extra bin? Some people may have space issues with keeping a 3rd bin if they live on small blocks or in multi-unit dwellings.
        • Cookie about 9 years ago
          True - however in this case smaller general waste bins would be easier to handle for people with space or physical issues. I am sure there are ways to manage a system such as this. Blocks of units could share green waste bins for scraps as they would have less garden waste, using a compost bin that only takes scraps and gradually returns the waste into the ground only needs minimal space, I have mine in a small area approx 60cm square outside my kitchen and it is actually easier than going to the bin. A bit of garden lime in there occasionally keeps the pests away. I believe the key is having a small bin for general waste and a large recycle bin, both collected weekly. Once residents have to make do with a smaller bin the desire to recycle is greater. People could still opt for a large general waste bin and pay a higher fee for it. And those of us who want a green waste bin might have to do the same, although surely the council could sell compost and mulch for some return. It seems from the replies that many people are putting out half empty waste bins each week. In the big picture this must be a waste of resources.
    • Collis about 9 years ago
      I dont understand why the general waste has to be picked up weekly. Specifically if a green (all organics) waste is done weekly. The general waste becomes non recyclable wastes. Prehaps these non recyclable wastes can be mixed with recycles and sorted instead of the general 2 bin system being considered.I know our general waste bin would go out monthly then. However, my neighoub has a child and they fill their waste bin weekly with disposable nappies, NOW theses a problem.
    • Caz about 9 years ago
      I'd prefer to have smaller bin for the general waste to be collected weekly, keep the current fortnightly recycling collection and provide a large bin for garden waste with collection probably on a fortnightly basis. I've noted the many comments on this forum from people who have worm farms and their suggestions that Council should provide them to residents - not for me thanks nor chooks. We are seniors who do compost/recycle and there'd be others of our age in the Council area who just aren't interested in worm farms or chooks. Our main problem is green waste.
  • Lil_jane about 9 years ago
    I already compost my food scraps but see the third bin as a excellent decision. Although my home compost can handle the food scraps, the other green waste I have eg lawn clippings, tree pruning etc are too much for my home compost to manage. As a result a large portion of my general waste is the green waste I cannot manage in the compost bin.
  • jannianm about 9 years ago
    Hi,I put all food scraps (non flesh) into compost or my worm farm. I would use a green waste bin for weeds, especially those in seed or flower and twigs and tree scraps that fall from the gum trees, other tree 'droppings' and pruning waste. If there was third bin, I would add meat and fish scraps, fat etc, now that I have learned it can be dealt with. I would wrap such scraps in newspaper. Currently, they go into the normal waste bin, often wrapped in used plastic bags. Other than that, my waste is generally plastic contaminated with food - meat or fish. I recycle all other plastics, cans, bottles, paper and cardboard.I am reluctant to support a third bin because of the emissions caused by collection of the bin. I am relatively happy with the current system, although at times, I have too many newspapers over a fortnight to fit into the paper and cardboard section of the bin. If the situation dictates a third bin, I'll happily use it.Suggestion: Would the environmental requirements on the council be met if all residents were offered a worm farm, worms and instruction on how to use it, rather than the fuel, noise and other costs of a third collection?
    • Project Leader about 9 years ago
      Implementing a home composting system has been considered and evaluated and does produce excellent results in terms of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. However, proven experience throughout the world has shown that achieveing and maintaining participation is very difficult, and the system can become redundant. In addition, there is a portion of the population in Lake Macquarie that would not be able to use a home composting system due to either their style of housing (units/ small blocks), or physical disabilities or age.
  • Pat about 9 years ago
    This forum has come "out of the blue" and I think Council could have better explained the reasons and the plans behind the proposal to have a green waste bin including food scraps. My initial reaction, like others' on this blog, was that it would be messy and unhygienic to toss garden clippings and food waste together in a bin. But then I heard it explained more fully.By coincidence, last week on ABC Radio National I heard a segment on this very topic - no thanks to Lake Macquarie Council who have explained little. I think the program was Bush Telegraph. One of the waste companies in Sydney is promoting the idea. Special degradable bags will be supplied to households in which food scraps will be placed before putting them in the green bin. This sounds like a great idea and a way to overcome the odour and mess problem that concerns many. Secondly, the program outlined the plan for distributing organically treated green waste to farms as a substitute for chemical fertiliser, which in this day of predicted peak phosphorus and other problems associated with chemical fertilisers, seems to make a lot of sense.However none of this has been proposed or explained to us by our Council. If it had been, I and probably many others would have been much more enthusiastic about the combined green waste idea to save so much potentially productive organic material from disappearing into dead landfill. How about it, Council? What is going on?
    • Collis about 9 years ago
      I agree with most of this comment except the "out of the blue" comment.Council letter box dropped information some time ago and I have been attending their meeting, of which there has been sufficient, since. Also this idea of a 3rd bin has been in the general media for some time.
    • Project Leader about 9 years ago
      Hi Pat,If you refer to the previous discussion topics you will see that the three-bin system LMCC is considering is explained, it also appears in the FAQs section. As Collis has mentioned, the topic has been in the Newcastle Herald a couple of times over the last 2 months and ABC interviewed LMCC on Monday 13 September regarding the Waste Strategy Project. There was also a lot of advertising of the community workshops on this issue that were held in August and September. It is not too late to have your say, and LMCC encourages you to make comments on the topics and take a vote on which bin system you would prefer. If you have further queries regarding the Waste Strategy Project, please send through an email by using the Contact Administrator button on the top of this page, or alternatively contact Council on 4921 0333.
    • Caz about 9 years ago
      Who will pay for the degradable bags once the initial supply to households has been exhausted?
      • Project Leader about 9 years ago
        The details of a waste strategy, such as the supply of biodegradable bags for a 3-bin system and the collection frequency etc, would need to be considered after a strategy is selected, as it is an implementation issue. Such a decision would be dependent on evaluating associated costs, risks (of not supplying, such as plastic bag contamination), logistical issues and community feedback.
  • lamson about 9 years ago
    We currently compost food waste with the exception of meat, bones and the like, but all vegetable matter goes into the compost which is eventually used on the garden. I would envisage this practice to continue.
  • Collis about 9 years ago
    I believe we have a bin for organics (food and green waste) which is collected weekly. The recycleables are already under control. So that leaves the relatively small amount of non recycleables to deal with which can continue biweekly and I advocate a bigger green bin. The non recycleables can be put with the recycleables and sorted at the waste station like they plan to in the 2 bin system. Not sure what to do with disposable nappies.
  • Alida about 9 years ago
    i am happy to put the food waste into the 3rd bin as long as the bin was collected every week. otherwise we could still put the food scraps in the normal bin we use now. we could have the grass clippings go into the 3rd bin and have that collected once a fortnight (off week to the recycling bin). our local school is asking parents to bring in their food scraps for their garden. i reckon thats a good idea. more schools could get involved with that.
  • Pat about 9 years ago
    If all this green waste is collected and saved from landfill, how is it going to be used?
    • Project Leader about 9 years ago
      There is at present a portion of the waste stream that is currently not recyclable or re-usable, such as disposable nappies and items like this have to go to landfill until an alternative is found.
      • Pat about 9 years ago
        But what will happen to the green waste that IS saved from landfill?
        • Project Leader about 9 years ago
          The green and food waste that is saved from landfill will go through an enclosed tunnel composting process. The compost is then matured, screened and where appropriate blended to create 'fit for purpose' products.
          • Pat about 9 years ago
            Can you be more specific? Will mass composting benefit the ratepayers in the long run through sales of organic fertiliser products, for instance? What is the benefit to the environment? Council does not seem to be keen on selling the idea, in my opinion.
            • Project Leader about 9 years ago
              Pat- hopefully this clarifies your question.Speculating the long-term cost/benefits of an organic compost is hard to do- it is dependent on the supply and demand of the product in the future, the market it for it. Any revenue from the selling of compost would be used to offset the production costs, so depending on the market, it could assist in offsetting costs on some scale. One benefit of the quality of compost produced with a 3 bin system is that is has a better chance of staying above State Government quality controls for composts as the ingredients are only organic (food and garden waste) material. In comparison, the compost produced by the 2 bin system is a lower grade and so its use is more limited. So the environmental benefits of the organic compost from the 3 bin system are greater as it has less contaminants.
  • Donno about 9 years ago
    The 3rd bin should be a COMPOSTING BIN. They are cheaper to make/buy, make the best use of food and similar 'edible for worms' items and the product produced is more sensibly used as fertilizer not only in the home garden, but also throughout Council gardens etc.Also helps to support the promotion of Home Vegetable Gardens - rather than purchase overseas products !!
  • Jasper about 9 years ago
    Please give us a 3 bin system. I have so many trees and shrubs around my place, and trying to keep them under control and disposing of this waste, is totally impossible with a 2 bin system. I feel so guilty putting green waste into my normal 'green' bin it, and I think it would be great to help the environment to have this third bin available to us. I have friends and family on the central and mid north coast who love the 3 bin system. It would be a great thing.
  • roccobear about 9 years ago
    Prior to the advent of plastic bags,all food scraps were wrapped in paper before they were put in the bin.The paper will biodegrade in the ground with the other organic matter.
  • wantnot about 9 years ago
    3 bins seams ideal although I have no need for 3 as I already compost .correct sorting by others is my concern.
  • jferguson about 9 years ago
    I have chooks - hence that's where my food scraps go to.
  • Deb_Standen about 9 years ago
    Some weeks ago I attended a compost info session and recieved a compost bin run at Bunnings Belmont on behalf of LMCC. Since then we have been coposting in the back yard for the first time. We both work so most days we are lucky to get time to water the garden after taking the kids to afternoon sports. So finding time to tend to the compost bin regualrly is near impossible. We now also have mice. There are no doubt things we could do to improve the situation but i have to think a 3rd bin would be worth the trouble, especially if all we have to do is wrap food waste in the old newspaper. I do feel it would need to be emptied every week in order to make opening the lid bearable, otherwise the smell would knock u over.
  • Spandolin about 9 years ago
    The only kitchen scraps I have are meat scraps and citrus and onion peels - I would wrap these in paper if a third bin were introduced.