Recycling Down Under

16 November 2011

In January next year, the Tour Down Under, once Adelaide’s, now Australia’s premier cycling event, will no doubt attract special attention with the amazing success of Cadel Evans in the Tour de France last July. Cycling, not just the professional or the competitive kind, but also cycling to commute from place to place has become increasingly popular – and so has recycling.

National Recycling Week was established by Planet Ark 15 years ago and now has a permanent place on the calendar of Australia-wide events during the second week of November each year.

Recycling in Australia has a long history. The first Australian paper mill to use recycled material was built in 1815. And waste paper collections from households and factories started in Melbourne in the 1920s.

During the first half of the last century, resources were generally not as readily available as they are today; so people valued them more and reused materials whenever possible.

Now, with a greater awareness of environmental issues, recycling has once again become an important part of our more modern society. Of course, recycling some things is especially problematic; and there are some things that should never be recycled, nor should they end up on the rubbish dump. Top of the list of these non-recyclable products are medicines.

Keeping old medicines can be a health risk, and disposing of unwanted medicines inappropriately can also pose a risk to the environment.

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Recycling Down Under