After nearly a year of well-attended and lively monthly meetings to talk about projects and the need for community action to save wasted resources and encourage more local recycling for ‘resource circularity,’ the TTT Rethinking Waste into Resources group is poised to break out of the meeting room. The plan is to jump into action with bi-monthly public engagement ‘doing’ events to get out there and build upon ideas and to consolidate existing projects. This will give group members and the local community a chance to share skills and support the projects they care most about. The December meeting will do just that, with group members gathering outside the Mansion at the first Christmas a market Tuesday Dec 5th to offer up Boomerang Bags (reusable shopping bags) to shoppers, and engage townsfolk with the group's various projects, including urging people to make a pledge to the Refill Totnes campaign (and also complete a short survey on community composting). Please check the webpage or email Ben at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info, or call 07510 916384
These ‘out there’ meetings will be interspersed with bimonthly ideas meeting held on the first Thursday of each month at REconomy Centre as per normal mode of operation. The next meeting at REconomy centre will therefore take place on Thursday 4th January at 6:30pm.
Projects to date at their various stages of development include:
- Boomerang Bags (reusable bags in shops) - check us out on Facebook
- Refill Devon (reusable water bottle fill up scheme) 13 shops signed up already
- Community Composting for Totnes – we will be asking people to complete a short survey to give their support. After canvassing public opinion at the Forking Local Food Festival and the Transition Eco Fair it is clear there is considerable public support for Totnes Composting
- Film Night to screen ‘A Plastic Ocean’ in late March to engage local schools and families with the issue of marine ocean plastics and what we can do as a local community to help speed the journey to zero waste (thanks to Amy Allen for bringing this idea and voluntary capacity). We are currently seeking funded to enhance projects for 2018
The TTT Eco Fair on Saturday October 21st was a great opportunity to engage folk and spread the word and there was a good deal of positive feedback about the projects we presented. Ben Bryant from TTT Rethinking Waste shared a table with Jan O’Highway of the newly formed arts groups, and displayed an art installation from recycled plastic named the Four Seasons with the Autumn head featuring.
- Ben and Jan staffing the DCRN and ACTTT stall
- The autumn face of the recycled sculpture
Furthermore there was considerable support for a community composting project in Totnes to help keep fertility in the soil locally and produce a high quality growing medium for local people, a Totnes Compost. So far nearly 100 surveys have been submitted which demonstrate the need for local solutions to deal with out resources. Proximity Principle is a cornerstone of good resource management. Why take our precious resource out of the district and see nothing coming back. The group is exploring various ways of closing the recycling loop and helping develop a circular economy locally. Watch this space.
Recycling Tip – Did you know? Residents in the South Hams can now recycle beverage cartons (aka tetrapaks) via the councils fortnightly recycling collection? Many people in the Rethinking Waste group were unaware of this service improvement but having checked the updated South Hams Recycling Guide we can confirm it is true and what good news it is too. The ACE Group of carton manufacturers (inc. Tetrapak) have invested a huge amount into trying to stimulate more carton recycling across the UK and recenelty built a reprocessing facility or mill for recycling cartons near Halifax.
Please see the image below taken from, from SHAMS Recycling Guide 2017 which clarifies what can go into your blue recycling sack, including cartons. More info at https://www.southhams.gov.uk/article/454/Your-Waste-Service