December 9, 2019

Mullum Show diverts 90% of waste from landfill

The Problem with Waste


In Mullumbimby, and in many towns globally, we are facing the reality of an excess of waste. The Myocum tip is full and the Shire’s waste is trucked to Toowoomba weekly. Landfills pose a risk to groundwater as the liquid that pools at the bottom is a toxic sludge, protected from leaking by a man made bladder. 

Our recycling system is in crisis since China announced its National Sword policy in 2018. They effectively decided to stop buying the developed worlds recycling materials which was a massive blow to Australian councils who are responsible for negotiating contracts with resource recovery operators who’s biggest customer was China. 

The Mullumbimby Agricultural Show

Founded in 1907, the Mullumbimby Agricultural Show has run annually for decades, celebrating agricultural, horticultural, livestock industries, and the community whose livelihoods are centred around these industries. With its many competitions, displays, demonstrations, rides, stalls, exhibitions, and performances, the Mullum Show is an important event for many to share knowledge and experiences. As a non-profit the Mullum Show is committed to evolving with modern day lifestyles, while maintaining beloved traditions for a weekend of festivities suitable for everyone. 

Mullum Cares 

Founded in 2015, Mullum Cares is a community organization that promotes and supports the growing consumer demand for conservation by partnering with community groups, council, local businesses and individuals in our community who are keen to reduce their ecological impact and leave the best planet possible for future generations. 

In April 2019 Mullum Cares launched a Library of Stuff to store and manage assets that assist events to reduce waste and maximise diverting waste from landfill. The Library of Stuff also stocks a broad range of infrequently used items that its general members borrow for 1-2 weeks at a time – like power and hand tools, gardening and camping gear, board games and more:) See 

Mullum Show Waste Management Proposal & Results 

Mullum Cares experience with waste at community events lead to a proposal to reduce the Show’s waste to landfill by 90% for the same price as having the cardboard and CDS containers recycled and the rest disposed of in landfill. This result was achieved with sponsorship from the Library of Stuff and MeetPat (who provided 2 water bottle refills and 1 bubbler unit), a team of volunteers and two waste managers who donated of their normal fee. 

Mullum Cares’ effort to manage the 2019 Mullum Show’s waste was only possible with the assistance of international students who were in the Shire for November studying sustainability.  A call out to the local community only resulted in one person offering to assist with the task of responsibly managing the event’s waste. 

Special thanks to the students from SIT