Take the Pledge, has the edge! Reducing waste through community action in the City of Unley

KESAB environmental solutions have been working in partnership with the City of Unley for almost 10 years, delivering a range of tailored waste and recycling education programs to schools, community, and businesses.

These programs engage residents, students, school staff, business owners, and those working in the City of Unley to better understand sustainable waste and recycling practices and to actively participate in diverting as much waste from landfill as possible.

In 2016 the Take the Pledge program was developed to encourage and foster sustainable behaviour change, focusing on household waste and recycling. Designed with community-based social marketing principles, the program now has more than 1900 participating households in the City of Unley, who have committed to recycling more and diverting as much organic material as possible to the green bins. Note that as Unley is a metropolitan South Australian Council, this includes food scraps (even bones or meat products).

Take the Pledge participants benefit from regular access to up-to-date waste and recycling information, events, and the opportunity to win prizes in acknowledgement of their efforts. Recipients of these prizes encourage other members of their community to get involved by sharing their story, learnings and tips for success.

A recent analysis of the program data by Colby Phillips Advisory, as part of a wider review for the City of Unley, has highlighted just how successful Take the Pledge has been. This data comes from regular audits of both Take the Pledge participant bins and the wider Unley community since 2016.  The results are a testament to the commitment of Unley Council households that have taken the Pledge and are sending less to landfill. In fact, pledged households are collectively diverting a whopping 422 tonnes of waste from landfill each year in comparison the households in the City of Unley that have not taken the Pledge! Well done!

 

The Residual Waste to Landfill graph below shows there has been a 15% reduction in residual waste sent to landfill since the Take the Pledge program was launched in 2016.

 

These results are incredibly promising. Imagine what we could achieve if more households in the City of Unley Take the Pledge, or other Councils around the state ran similar programs!

If you live in the City of Unley and would like to Take the Pledge, please visit the City of Unley ‘Reducing Waste’ webpage and register using the online form. For more information about KESAB school and community education programs, visit our Community and School webpages.

 

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