As the world celebrates Earth Day on April 22, the efforts of the region's sustainable practices have been brought to light after a year of eco-friendly changes seen throughout the city.
Compostable food waste bin
One of the biggest changes seen over the year was the introduction of the small, compostable food waste bin organised by Wagga City Council in February 2018. Coming equip with biodegradable bin liners, the new kitchen addition was brought in as an attempt to see landfill waste reduced, and to produce compost to fuel the city's gardens.
The first bag of compost produced was opened this year by Council waste education & communications officer, Alice Kent, demonstrating the program's success.
As the war on waste continues to spread across the globe, Wagga took a step in the right direction to reduce plastic usage with the introduction of Boomerang Bags. The Wagga Boomerang Bags group launched their first permanent stand just last week, handing out free, reusable bags to shoppers at a Lake Albert Foodworks.
The initiative promotes people to steer away from plastic bags and opt for their eco-friendly alternatives handmade by volunteers from recycled materials like curtains, sun lounges and unused hospital linens.
Kindly, Darling clothing business
Starting in Temora by two mums, Alison Swanston and Libby Mullavey, the ethical fashion brand opened fully in Temora and online for all of Australia in March this year. The ladies sought to provide a 'one-stop shop' for customers to access a range of sustainable, ethically sourced clothing brands.
The business features brands like Outland Denim, which not only produces ethically sourced clothing, but gives rescued women from human trafficking and exploitation in Cambodia training and ethical employment. They also feature local labels such as Smitten Ink and active wear from Dharma Bums.
Electric vehicle charging stations
The Riverina saw the installation of its first electric vehicle fast charging station in Narrandera at the beginning of this year, promoting the use of eco-friendly cars as an option for travel. The charging station was introduced in conjunction with NRMA, and will most likely be the first of a few around the region.
Wagga City Council have also approved negotiations with NRMA to discuss introducing fast charging station in Wagga as well.
Tap - Great taste, less waste campaign
Wagga City Council introduced a new initiative in late 2017 promoting refillable water bottles over plastic alternatives, and this year has seen support continue. Currently, over 20 businesses across the city have signed up to receive glass bottles from the council to serve in their cafes and restaurants instead of plastic bottles, and the city has six refill stations on offer for the public.
The city's overall efforts to improve the region's sustainability and push for a more eco-friendly lifestyle is continuing to advance in all of the commercial, social, and environmental sectors of the community.
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