The War on Waste – Good for the Environment​ and Your Wallet

The new series of War on Waste kicks off on the ABC tonight at 8.30pm. It’s fair to say Series One last year was an eye opener for every day Aussies. Seeing just how much food, clothing and household stuff goes to landfill was pretty shocking. Good little consumers, we have become! But have we reached a tipping point?

The War on Waste is focussed on encouraging consumers and businesses to take action. That’s certainly great for our environment but there’s also a financial upside. Cutting back has been popularised in recent years by The Minimalists with their Netflix doco and Mr Money Mustache and his unique approach to cutting back and living the simple life.

Here are a few ways the War on Waste can help your hip pocket:


Bottled water can cost you nearly 2000 times more than the same thing from the tap. When you think about it, it’s outrageous! When else would you pay 2000 times more for a close to identical product?


When Craig Reucassel stood on a mountain of clothes in Martin Place, he told us that 6,000 kilograms of clothes are dumped in landfill every 10 minutes. The past year has seen the rise of clothing swaps and fashion rental sites for designer dresses.


The War on Waste estimated there are 50,000 disposable coffee cups being dumped in landfill every 30 minutes. A KeepCup can save around 50c a coffee and reduces the coffee cup waste. Or go old school and back to the coffee mug and plunger (if you can overcome your coffee snobishness). Anyone who says you can’t save money cutting back on your daily coffee fix, hasn’t done the sums!


How much food do you throw away at the end of every week? Decide on a meal plan for the week. Be conscious of what is being thrown away (or better still composted) and actively try to reduce it. According to Oz Harvest, $3,800 worth of groceries per household ends up in the bin.


Taking it a step further but with arguably the biggest bang for your buck is environmentally friendly (responsible or sustainable) investing. While there’s a myth that responsible investments mean sacrificing returns, research shows they are outperforming mainstream funds. Take a look through your investment or super portfolio.  Avoid those companies that do environmental damage and focus on companies that are serious about sustainable solutions.


You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.

Jane Goodall

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