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  • Writer's pictureThe Beagle

Editorial August 4th 2023

Welcome to this week’s editorial, Council’s Public Access session this week saw a member of the public coming forward asking what the community and council could do to improve recycling and repurposing. Being the period of the annual hardwaste collection where thousands of cubic metres of unwanted house hold goods are stacked at the front of our homes for collection the timing of the presentation sought to reiterate that, as a community, we could do more to reduce the waste going to landfill. The speaker spoke of days of old when the shire had small tips on the outskirts of our towns. Many in the Tuross/Bodalla area will fond memories of the old Turlinjah tip. Rubbish was dumped in one section to be burnt while anything you thought might be of use to someone else was put to one side, and often collected to be repaired or repurposed. If you were to return to those days of old you would observe two key things. The household rubbish that was dumped generally had far less toxins. Yes, asbestos cladding was in there, along with volatile and toxic paints and chemicals, but generally there was far less plastic. It was understandable that the periodic burning off of these tips had to stop as they were uncontrolled as well as being exposed for the dangers they presented to the environment by way of leaching, smoke and potential bushfire risk. But with the closures came the closure of the repurposing opportunity as well. In order to gain control of the impact of garbage tips Council established two primary tips (Brou and Surfside) and downgraded their Moruya Tip as it had arrived at its use by date and was unable to expand. The public were now encouraged to use kerbside collection and separate household, green and recyclable waste. But what of the near working lawnmowers, what of the household furniture and household goods that were too good to be wasted? Council once promoted that it has a “Buy Back Shop” where worthy items had been saved for resale. That, for whatever reason, no longer exists. Fortunately in its place we have Rally for Recovery at Tomakin along with Vinnies and other agencies stepping in to ensure functioning household goods are given a second life. In days of old Eurobodalla residents survived on low incomes but lived rich lives, Many still do having the oldest demographic in NSW. With the high number of residents over 65 it stands to reason that many had come through tough times and they knew, and respected that one needed to rationalise and reuse or repurpose as money was hard to come by. But over the decades much has changed when it comes to garbage and waste in the Eurobodalla. Our two main tips are under pressure of reaching their capacity with a third Super Tip being considered. One of the main issues around this time of year is that the bulk of the household goods we now buy have reduced lifespans, either by poor workmanship or by design. What was junk to one and a treasure to another has simply become junk. And lots of it. As a litmus test goes it would appear that either we, as a community, have taken it upon ourselves to proactively feed the reuse and repurpose supply line by giving unwanted, but useable household items to Rally and Vinnies or that due to the economy we are holding on to our items. A drive around the shire this year offers a different picture compared to previous years. There appears to be less valuable treasure to be found. Maybe, just maybe, without any educative help from Council as was requested today, we are quietly achieving the reuse and restoration required to assist our household “waste” to be more circular where the old or unused finds new homes, or is repaired. If that is the case it would be worthy of a statement from Council at the end of the annual household waste collection that might further encourage recycling, reuse and restoration. We now have some terrific community initiates that we can support. Rally for Recovery at Tomakin do a brilliant job having already raised over $3 million for Sydney Children’s Hospitals Foundation. Then there is the Eurobodalla Repair Café in Moruya each Friday with soldering irons, sewing machines and tools at the ready to keep things working. Most recently there is the 3.4 thousand strong members of the Face Book group Buy Nothing Eurobodalla Coast, NSW . In all it appears that there is little that Council can do any further than continuing to educate people in recycling their household waste and reducing the volume of waste that goes to our tip faces. But maybe, just maybe, it would a terrific to let us know if we are improving. The presentation this week to the Council’s Public Access reminds us all that we all have a voice and that sometimes the solutions are not to be delivered by Council but by our own community in a hope of making it a better place for all. Until next—lei


NOTE: Comments were TRIALED - in the end it failed as humans will be humans and it turned into a pile of merde; only contributed to by just a handful who did little to add to the conversation of the issue at hand. Anyone who would like to contribute an opinion are encouraged to send in a Letter to the Editor where it might be considered for publication

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