What Team TAXIBOX is Learning in Sustainable Waste Management Training

Learning about ineffective waste management and sustainability

In January, we were lucky enough to welcome local waste warrior April Williams into TAXIBOX HQ, Circular Economy Champion at the City of Monash. Talking all things zero waste and sustainable waste management, April helped us out by teaching our team about recycling, sustainability, and how we can introduce small changes into our lives to make a huge impact on our planet.

Globally, our planet has started getting the attention it has been so desperately crying out for, but we’ve still barely scratched the surface. To keep making good stuff happen, we need to continue supporting climate action initiatives, creating sustainable energy solutions, and investing in resilient infrastructure. 

To make sure we weren’t putting the (literal) weight of the world on our team’s shoulders, we spent this session covering sustainability basics we can introduce in small ways, in our own lives.

Learning about sustainability and waste management with advocate April Williams

Recycling Beyond Your Bin at Home

If ONLY it was as easy as throwing everything into your yellow bin at home and wiping your hands clean. Turns out recycling is more complicated than you might think… but don’t worry, getting it right doesn’t have to be so hard. All we need to do is be a bit more thorough.

Want to make sure your stuff actually makes it into the recycling centre, and finds a way out alive (in its second life as a new product)? Here are a few tips:

  • Keep your recycling loose, e.g. don’t stick it in a bag
  • Follow the rules of your local council’s recycling program by finding them online
  • Rinse your recyclables (they don’t have to be spotless, just clean enough that nothing spills)

Anything you can’t stick in your bin? You may be able to recycle for free elsewhere. Overall, all we need to do better is to think before we toss.

Making Small Changes Makes a Big Difference

Would you believe that over 1 BILLION takeaway, disposable coffee cups end up in landfill in Australia every year? We know Melbourners love their coffee, but it’s tough to hear that Melbourne alone throws away 50,000 of those cups every half hour. Most of these coffee cups have plastic lining, which – long story short – means they don’t have enough paper to be recyclable.

Turns out digging around in your car for the keep-cup you thought you lost? Can make a world of a difference (especially if we all commit to ditching the disposables). Some coffee shops have even started offering edible keep-cups, to keep that plastic out of the bin.

@getwasteed Take a hint, @starbucks! 📹good_edi (IG) #ediblecup #sustainableliving #coffeefanatics #compostable ♬ Oblivion – Grimes

If you don’t have a keep cup at home? Don’t let that stop you. Most coffee shops will be happy to serve you a coffee in any cup you bring from home. Maybe not a wheelbarrow or a watering can, but a mug will do the trick. You can even look up sustainably responsible cafes ahead of your coffee run, to be extra sure you’re not going to upset the barista.

Maybe you could trick a very generous barista into supplying you with a TAXIBOX worth of coffee one day, who knows? Though we don’t recommend you try that at home… that much coffee would send you through the roof, and we’re not sure our TBs are that easy to drink out of. Great at storing other non-consumable stuff, though *wink wink, nudge nudge*

No One’s Sustainability is Perfect – But That Shouldn’t Stop Us From Trying

After one day of sustainability training, it’s pretty unlikely that anyone is going to wake up transformed into a zero waste superhuman. Creating absolutely no waste is a big ask, and we don’t expect our team to live up to unrealistic expectations – but as a business, we know that it’s our responsibility to do the best we can, which is why we’ve made some positive changes to reduce our environmental impact:

  • TAXIBOX HQ has swapped out all cleaning products over to environmentally friendly alternatives, and opted for some new bins for more effective waste management
  • We’ve introduced clean energy into our operations with all-new, all-electric forklifts (they’re quiet, clean, green, and we’re the first Australian business to get our hands on some)
  • Through our partnership with Carbon Neutral, we now plant one tree for every TAXIBOX booking, to improve our biodiversity here in Australia

While we make continue to make bigger sustainable changes as a business, we’ve been encouraging the TAXIBOX Team to make small changes where they can, whether they’re ditching their disposables, avoiding soft plastics, opting for a keep cup, or using less sticky notes – we can’t wait to see how things change as we continue to introduce more initiatives into our day-to-day at TAXIBOX HQ.

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