Document Type



Edith Cowan University

Place of Publication

Perth, Western Australia


Department of Environmental Management


Van Etten, E., Lund, M., & Troeth, R. (1994). A preliminary study of the potential for recycling and waste minimisation at Edith Cowan University: report to the Edith Cowan University Student Guild. Perth, Australia: Edith Cowan University.


In recent years there has been a growing realisation worldwide that disposing of large quantities of waste to landfill was not only causing problems of pollution(e.g. leachate and gas production) but suitable sites were rapidly filling up. In Perth it is has been estimated that present landfill sites will only last until 2007 (Sinclair and Knight, 1991). To help extend the life of current landfill sites and in response to environmental concerns the Western . Australia Government produced a State Recycling Blueprint (Department of Commerce and Trade, 1993). This describes strategies for the minimisation of waste production and maximisation of recycling and reuse. A majority of local shire councils have started kerbside recycling schemes, where the increased· cost of collection and sorting is offset against reductions in landfill waste and the sale of recyclable materials.

As the universities are not ratable properties they are not covered by council recycling schemes (although both Wanneroo and Stirling City Councils will pick up recyclables, without reward). Universities are by most standards large producers of waste. To discard most of this waste for disposal to landfill is becoming increasingly unacceptable to many in the community: Curtin University has recently introduced a recycling initiative and it is likely that the other WA universities will follow suit Curtin. managed to attract considerable favourable publicity during the introduction of it's initiative. The willingness· of the Student Guild of Edith Cowan University (ECU) to fund this study indicates that there. is the potential for a recycling initiative at ECU to be successful.

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