Recycling program targets mattress spill
Imagine how many end-to-end mattresses it would take to stretch from Melbourne to Brisbane.
Believe it or not, the over 1 million people who end up in Australia’s waste stream each year would make it through, and more.
Unwanted mattresses are also believed to be the most prevalent item in the country, accounting for 20 percent of inorganic waste found in vacant blocks, alleys and bush reserves.
To tackle the problem, sleep solutions company Ecosa has started a recycling program that it hopes will not only help clean Australia, but will also keep thousands of tons of bedding from reaching public places. landfills.
The nonprofit program aims to reuse mattresses, sheets and pillowcases into a range of new products such as kindling, weed mats, foam insulation, acoustic panels and animal litter.
It is hoped that the program will be expanded to include the recycling of other household items, including furniture.
While some local councils remove unwanted mattresses on request and other companies also recycle them once they are thrown out, Ecosa says it is ready to foot the bill to make this happen more often.
The main problem with disposing of mattresses is their heaviness, said spokesperson Eden Benito.
Not only are they difficult to get out of the house, but their bulkiness makes them difficult to transport.
“There are only a limited number of ways a household can responsibly dispose of these larger items and most of them end up in the landfill,” Benito said.
“Even when disposed of properly, mattresses are operationally problematic for the waste stream, as their gas emissions can be extremely dangerous in landfill fires.”
Ecosa will allow households to book recycling collections no matter who they bought the mattress from.
While they will pay for the pickup ($ 80 for mattresses, $ 30 for linens), the cost is actually covered by a voucher at the end of the pickup.
During this time, the sheets can be broken down and re-spun into other textile articles and the wood and foam components of the mattresses can be separated and recycled into particle board and carpet padding.
“By making it easier and more cost effective for consumers, we can make recycling your mattress as convenient as taking your milk container out the door,” said Benito.