Nature’s circular economy

David and Gabby Locke and the Entire Tech team receiving their Switched on Business Award from City of Armadale Mayor and Chairperson of the South East Regional Energy Group, Ruth Butterfield. They were joined by Cr Aaron Adams (City of Gosnells / SEREG delegate), City of Melville Business Development Advisor Stuart Tomlinson and Sustainability Engagement Officer Jess Sutherland. Photo credit: City of Melville. 

In recent years, the concept of the “circular economy” has gained popularity as a means of fostering economic activity while minimising negative environmental impacts.

The circular economy – an alternative to the traditional linear model of extraction, production and disposal – keeps resources in use for as long as possible, extracts the maximum value from them while in use, then recovers materials and regenerates products at the end of each service life.

Composting is nature’s circular economy, where food waste is reduced and reused and its nutrients recycled into fertiliser. By returning these nutrients back to the soil, rather than letting organic waste rot away in landfills, we can feed diverse life in the soil. The bacteria, fungi, insects and worms in compost support healthy plant growth, which will help offset greenhouse gas emissions.

Our top five tips for effective composting:

  1. Choose a bin with minimal aeration holes, sliding doors or hatches. In the Perth climate, your compost will dry out too quickly if exposed to too much air
  2. Find a sunny spot for your compost bin, the process will be faster if your compost is hot
  3. Feed your compost diverse materials (garden prunings, newspaper, kitchen scraps, grass clippings) and keep it moist at all times
  4. Keep fats and oils, meat and dairy out of your compost. They’ll get smelly and attract pests
  5. Your compost is ready when it smells earthy, is dark in colour and of a crumbly consistency

Staff and residents in Switch your thinking Councils can receive discounts on a range of composting and worm farm systems through Rewards for Residents.