Our landfills runneth over
Don’t expect this three-part documentary series to make comfortable viewing; on the contrary, it is Craig Reucassel’s express aim to shock Australian audiences out of their complacency about our wasteful ways.
For instance, in this first episode, which looks at food waste, he visits a banana farm and witnesses first hand the mountain of freshly harvested fruit that is thrown back into a hole, on account of the strict cosmetic standards laid down by the supermarkets. (The quantity of water and the fuel required to produce and destroy this crop is alarming, let alone that there are hungry people in the world.)
But it’s not just occurring at the paddock gate; Reucassel offers the statistic that every week the average Australian family throws out one in every five bags of groceries they purchase, and 3.3 million tonnes of food was wasted in 2015 (enough to fill the MCG six times). War on Waste
Reucassel meets a dumpster-diving granny, and challenges 10 families to live for one month as close to waste-free as possible.
Later episodes deal with the issue of plastic, in particular the five billion plastic bags used by Australians each year, 85 per cent of which end up in landfill (with a troubling proportion of the remainder finding their way into the ocean, and the digestive tracts of turtles and seabirds).
Finally, Reucassel turns our attention to the now ubiquitous takeaway coffee cup, with up to a billion thought to be thrown into landfill each year. As well as the fashion industry, whose obsession with ever cheaper and disposable garments is having a deleterious effect on the environment.
All worth thinking about — let’s hope a few minds are changed. Tuesday, 8.30pm, ABC.
Craig Reucassel turns our attention to the takeaway coffee cup, among other matters, in