The UTS Waste Management Plan (n.d.) was introduced as a required reading of the Wealth from Waste subject. This document is relevant as it outlined the history of waste management at UTS, the current progress and statistics of the amount of waste that is rescued or sent to landfill, the systems and facilities in place to sort and process waste on and off site, and the goals that UTS aimed to achieve into the future. This document, and other information about the UTS waste management system such as information by UTS Green (2017) and the Institute for Sustainable Futures (2017), was particularly useful to our group project as it provided information and guidance on our designs and helped frame our brief. It brought a non-governmental and small scale perspective to the organic waste problem.
The Highgrove Royal Gardens in Gloucestershire, United Kingdom, is a residence of the Prince of Wales which incorporates organic farming practices with sustainability concepts (The Prince of Wales, 2017). I was aware of Highgrove for many years through an introduction by my partner to a video on the gardens (The British Monarchy, 2011) as I had always had a keen interest in sustainability practices. The management practices of Highgrove show how the organic waste life cycle can be treated locally, within 15 acres, in a residential setting. I found it particularly interesting that they treat their own wastewater through a reed filtration system (The British Monarchy, 2011). In tandem with the gardens, Prince Charles has also established an International Sustainability Unit (2011) which has published articles addressing sustainable urbanisation (International Sustainability Unit, 2015) and research on the sustainability and resilience of food systems on a global level (International Sustainability Unit, 2011).
Technical Document on Municipal Organics Waste Processing
The “Technical Document on Municipal Organics Waste Processing” (Environment Canada, 2013) was a very valuable document in helping me understand the was organic was could be processed on a large scale and relates directly with the issues discussed in class in regards to how multiple systems and stakeholders may be able to work together to achieve a complete and efficient system. This document was found while I was searching for information about caddy liner design and organic waste statistics.
It was highly relevant to our subject as it describes, in depth, statistics of amounts of organic waste produced and processed in municipal areas in Canada, the challenges and benefits to recycling organic waste, the processes local councils may use to treat organic waste, the scientific and biological process of breaking down organics, the available technologies that can be harnessed for organic waste recycling, how the resulting by-products are used and the structure of the compost market system. It is an end to end understanding of the organic waste process which mentioned how bin caddies can be used in the household (Environment Canada, 2013, pp. 31) to which system combination could councils implement (Environment Canada, 2013, pp. 193). The information provided is educational and serves as a guide weighing the pros and cons of each method that is mentioned in the document to help local councils make decisions about their own waste management systems. The way the document was formed showed at least an interdisciplinary approach to understanding the full waste stream as it combined many industries and skill sets. Environment Canada also presented the information in a comprehensive yet concise manner which seemed ideal for making informed bureaucratic decisions.
The British Monarchy, 2011, “Highgroves: Discover its sustainable secrets”, Youtube video, England, viewed 10th June 2017, <https://youtu.be/OAbeYk_vSaI >
Environment Canada, 2013, “Technical Document on Municipal Solid Waste Organics Process”, Canada, viewed 17th April 2017, <http://www.compost.org/English/PDF/Technical_Document_MSW_Organics_Processing_2013.pdf >
International Sustainability Unit, 2011, “What Price Resilience? Towards sustainable and secure food systems“, UK, viewed 10th June 2017, <http://pcfisu.org/wp-content/uploads/pdfs/TPC0632_Resilience_report_WEB11_07_SMALLER.pdf >
International Sustainability Unit, 2015, “Food in an urbanised world“, UK, viewed 10th June 2017, <http://www.pcfisu.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/CRFS-7-April-10-.zip >
Prince of Wales, 2017, “The Royal Gardens“, Clarence House, England, viewed 10th June 2017, <https://www.princeofwales.gov.uk/features/the-royal-gardens >
UTS, n.d., “UTS Waste Management Plan“, UTS, Sydney, viewed 18th March 2017, <https://www.uts.edu.au/sites/default/files/WASTE_MANAGEMENT_PLAN.140301.pdf >
UTS Green, 2017, “Waste and recycling | University of Technology Sydney“, UTS, Sydney, viewed 17th April 2017, <https://www.uts.edu.au/partners-and-community/initiatives/uts-green/campus-operations/waste-and-recycling >
UTS Institute of Sustainable Futures, 2017, “Food scraps to soil conditioner: Processing food waste onsite at UTS | University of Technology Sydney“, UTS, Sydney, viewed 17th April 2017, <https://www.uts.edu.au/research-and-teaching/our-research/institute-sustainable-futures/our-research/food-futures/food >