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  • Top 10 Garbage Producing Countries in the World Top 10 Garbage Producing Countries in the World

    Top 10 Garbage Producing Countries in the World

Top 10 Garbage Producing Countries in the World

Here’s a scary stat: According to a report from the World Bank, urban residents generate 1.3 billion tonnes of trash globally per year. That’s 1.2 kg per person, per day. What’s worse, these numbers are expected to jump to 2.2 billion tonnes per year in 2025, or 1.4 kg per person per day.

And the biggest offenders? High-income countries just like Canada. In fact, OECD countries (The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) produce almost half of the world’s waste. It makes sense if you think about it. The higher the disposable income, the more stuff people buy—and throw away. And as living standards rise and urban populations grow, the problem is only going to get worse.

Here’s a rundown of the 10 OECD countries with the worst trash habits. Numbers are current waste production per capita (kg/capita/day) vs 2025 projected waste production per capita (kg/capita/day).

#1. New Zealand

Current: 3.68
Future: 3.00
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photo credit: Living on the Edge via photopin (license)

#2. Ireland

Current: 3.58
Future: 3.00

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photo credit: 420m via photopin (license)

 

#3. Norway

Current: 2.8
Future: 2.3

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photo credit: Tore Thiss Fjeld via Flickr

#4. Switzerland

Current: 2.61
Future: 2.3

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photo credit: Pier-Luc Bergeron via Flickr

#5. United States

Current: 2.58
Future: 2.3

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photo credit: Les Halnes via Flickr

#6. Austria

Current: 2.40
Future: 2.15

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photo credit: Diego Cambiaso via Flickr

#7. Denmark

Current: 2.34
Future: 2.15

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photo credit: Nelson L via Flickr

#8 Canada

Current: 2.33
Future: […]

  • Composting 101 Composting 101

    Composting 101

Composting 101

Composting is a lean, green (and free!) way to reduce the amount of waste you send to the landfill. While it’s not difficult, many people are intimidated by the process or simply don’t know what they can compost and what they can’t.

Here’s a quick primer on how it all works: 

 

Compost-Infographic

  • Space Junk: Science-Fiction Visions of Trash Space Junk: Science-Fiction Visions of Trash

    Space Junk: Science-Fiction Visions of Trash

Space Junk: Science-Fiction Visions of Trash

The visionaries of our future–science-fiction writers and movie makers–still see trash as a major component of our lives. Space junkyards, apocalyptic visions of landfills taking over entire cities, smog-filled unbreathable yellow skies are only a few ways that science-fiction storytellers have highlighted or criticized today’s over-consumptive society.

Today, we’ll discover some of the ways movies and TV shows have presented their visions of future trash.

Wall-E And The Trashed Planet

Pixar’s Wall-E works on several levels to criticize modern consumption and the culture of convenience. The movie opens with a small robot, Wall-E, whose job it is to pick up and compact the trash that humans–now all living onto space ships–have left behind. 

Unfortunately for Wall-E, this job never ends. There’s just too much rubbish, and it is literally covering the entire planet.

Once Wall-E leaves Earth to find the human makers who left him behind, he finds an overweight population that still lives in the convenience culture that produced all that trash in the first place:

For a kid’s movie, Wall-E gave adults plenty to think about too. Should we keep trashing and trashing until the entire planet is a landfill? Will we learn the lesson before we colonize the stars and repeat the tragedy on other planets?

Gravity and The Danger of Space Junk

If science-fiction is anything to go by, junkyards are forsaken places where only the most courageous go, because that’s where danger lurks. Other times, space junk itself is the danger, like in the recent movie Gravity.

Actually, junk orbiting around Earth is a very real problem. Even the infinity of space, it seems that we can’t manage to not produce trash…

Terra Nova and […]

  • Petes Haul a Day Junk Removal in Victoria BC
    Learn More About Your Garbage Person! [Infographic] Learn More About Your Garbage Person! [Infographic]

    Learn More About Your Garbage Person! [Infographic]

Learn More About Your Garbage Person! [Infographic]

Few of us ever see our garbage person–let alone talk to him or her. But our “sanitation engineers” (among other names they are sometimes called by–see below!) have peculiar traits that are worth knowing about.

If you’d like to know more about the person who sees your trash on every pickup day, check out our infographic!

Anatomy of a junk removal man

 

Did you know there was such a thing as “National Garbage Man Day”? Next June 17, make sure to let your garbage person know he or she is appreciated!

  • Haul a day junk removal Dunp truck at landfill
    Learn About Junk Reduction [Slideshare] Learn About Junk Reduction [Slideshare]

    Learn About Junk Reduction [Slideshare]

Learn About Junk Reduction [Slideshare]

We like junk. I mean, we pick it up all day long. It’s always interesting to see what people discard and to imagine why they discarded it.

But you know what we like more? Less junk to bring to the landfill. Because we’re there all the time, we directly see the impact of our wasteful consumer habits. So we made this Slideshare presentation on how to reduce your junk production.

 

Check out the rest of our blog for more information about waste in Victoria and tips to reuse, reduce and recycle.

  • Pink flowers
    Is Victoria As Green As We Think It Is? Is Victoria As Green As We Think It Is?

    Is Victoria As Green As We Think It Is?

Is Victoria As Green As We Think It Is?

People around the world know Victoria as the City of Gardens. And yes, we have beautiful gardens and finely manicured lawns and blooming flowers almost all year long. 

People who are not from the Pacific Northwest also think of the Pacific Northwest as a place where environmentalists rule the day. It’s easy to imagine that living in a place where nature takes so much space would make people want to preserve it as much as possible.

But among the Victoria sewage treatment plant controversy, the problems with the Victoria kitchen scraps program, we begin to wonder: is Victoria as green as it thinks it is? Here are some statistics to help clarify this a little.

Solid waste

Residential garbage makes up approximately 4,800 tonnes of waste sent to the Hartland landfill each year. Numbers from 2007 show close to 70,000 tonnes of solid waste produced every year, which includes commercial and industrial waste sent to the landfill or incinerator.

In general, BC still produces less waste per person than the Canadian average: 676kg vs 791kg (that was in 2004). In the same year, they also recycled more waste than the average Canadian.

In general, Victoria produces less waste and recycles more than the Canadian average.

CO2 emissions

Victoria’s total CO2 emission rate is about 5 tonnes per capita; the Canadian average is 18 tonnes and the US average close to 20. This definitely puts Victoria at the top of the pack when it comes to emissions.

However, 47.1% of Victorians still commute by car, with an extra 5.2% using carpool (2006 numbers). 12.6% use public transit.

One thing to be proud of, however, is the 9.5% of commuters that bike, compared to 2% in all of BC, and the 23.4% who […]

  • Old junk in a barn
    The First Pillar of Recycling: Charity The First Pillar of Recycling: Charity

    The First Pillar of Recycling: Charity

The First Pillar of Recycling: Charity

At Haul A Day, we have a philosophy. We call it the Pillars of Recycling. We believe that every old, broken or unused object deserves to receive thorough and thoughtful consideration. Is it really trash? What consequences will sending it to the landfill have on the environment and on others in the community? 

Give it away

You’re probably a lucky person. You have a roof over your head, food to fill your belly and maybe a car to take you places. You have enough money to replace old objects, and would rather get a new one than spend money getting a broken one repaired. But not everyone has the same luck.

The first pillar of recycling is charity. It means giving away things that we don’t use anymore to those who gladly will. It means considering the needs of the less fortunate in the community.

Many charitable organizations are always looking for donations in kind—whether it’s your old fridge, your now grown children’s clothes, or even a couch that doesn’t suit your new paint color. They will give them away to those who need them, or sell them to sustain their charity activities. Your things get a second life.

Don’t worry: people are very creative with old objects. They recycle, upcycle, reuse and remake. They repair and beautify. They create things outside of the purchase-and-throw-away cycle; they resist the corporate call to never-ending consumption.

Avoid the landfill

Another good thing about giving away your old stuff is that you prevent adding to the landfill for no reason. The Hartland Landfill Facility, hidden away in the woods of Saanich, may be out of sight for most of us, but it certainly isn’t out of mind for people who, like us, […]

  • Hoarding vs the Zen of Decluttering Hoarding vs the Zen of Decluttering

    Hoarding vs the Zen of Decluttering

Hoarding vs the Zen of Decluttering

There are a number of theories as to why people hoard stuff. We aren’t knocking hoarders – to be clear – some considerable part of our work brings us into the realms of minor hoarders on a regular basis. And you’d be surprised how many people hoard stuff, it’s not always so extreme as the sensational stories that make it to reality shows or tabloid magazines. We’ve met some pretty fascinating, brilliant, and admirable characters who call on us to haul away their junk when it gets to be too much by their own unique standards. There are extremes and then there’s a wide eclectic middle ground where most people fit in one way or another. It’s in this middle ground zone that we consider the psychology of hoarding and the benefits of decluttering.

Why do people amass large amounts of stuff they don’t need or use? For extreme hoarders there are often deeper emotional or neurological disorders underlying the problem, for those people merely decluttering is not going to be enough. Extreme hoarding behaviours can be caused by impairments in the brain, depression, grief, and trauma. However there is a broad spectrum of ‘hoarding’ and even for those far away from the extreme, some research suggests that letting go of stuff we feel attached to actually activates parts of our brains that experience physical pain!

What are possible effects of living with too much clutter? Well it turns out that investigating this subject opened up a labyrinth of research studies that go into this subject far too deeply for the scope of this article. For instance it’s not very good for childrens’ brain development to grow in severely disorganized […]

  • Home for sale
    Sell Your House Faster By Decluttering Sell Your House Faster By Decluttering

    Sell Your House Faster By Decluttering

Sell Your House Faster By Decluttering

If your house is currently on the market or you’re planning on selling soon, you know how challenging it can be to appeal to buyers and get a good price on your real estate. 

One thing we do at Haul A Day is to pick up old clutter from houses that are on sale. We’ve confirmed over the years that decluttered garages and backyards are powerful weapons for selling a home quick. Here’s our step-by-step guide to decluttering your home for a faster sale.

Step 1: Do you really need this?

Over the years, we accumulate stuff. Old papers and furniture, appliances, toys, boxes, you name it. We pile it on tables and shelves, hide it in our closets and garages and throw it in our backyards. We forget about it and go on with our life. But visitors looking to buy your home might look at all these things in horror. It’s not “their” stuff, so it looks strange.

The first step in our guide is to go through all your stuff and decide whether you want to keep it or not. As a rule, anything you haven’t used (or even thought about) for a year or more can go. If you haven’t used it in a year, you can be certain that you won’t use it anytime soon.

Do you really need all your stuff? That’s the question, isn’t it?

Step 2: Sell, give away, recycle 

Can you sell or give some of these objects you’ve decided you don’t need? Try to find a way to give new life to your neglected stuff before throwing it away. Someone out there […]

  • Blue recycling bins
    Victoria Recycling Guide—Where Do I Recycle My Stuff? Victoria Recycling Guide—Where Do I Recycle My Stuff?

    Victoria Recycling Guide—Where Do I Recycle My Stuff?

Victoria Recycling Guide—Where Do I Recycle My Stuff?

Updated: May 1st, 2015

We want this guide to be as useful as possible, so please leave a comment if you think something should be added or changed. We update it on a regular basis. 

As you probably already know, not everything is accepted in the CRD’s blue bins and blue bags. Things like light bulbs, electronics, Styrofoam and paint will be left on the curb on pickup day. So, where do you recycle the things that the CRD won’t pick up? Here’s a list of commonly requested items and where they can be disposed of.

Where to recycle electronics

Televisions, computers, speakers and other electronic equipment shouldn’t be simply put in the trash. Some components are toxic and can seep into groundwater.

If your equipment still works and you’re just replacing it for a better model, consider donating it to a charity or non-profit or selling it online. Reusing is just as important as recycling.

However, if your electronic equipment is broken and not repairable, several places will take them.

The Bottle Depots on Glanford and Queens (not Quadra) will take all electronics, and so will the Island Return It locations in Esquimalt and Sidney. Most of them will also be accepted at Asset Investment Recovery on Glanford. You can also take them directly to the Hartland Recycling Centre.

  • Return your old cell phones to Bell World at the Bay Centre or Mayfair Mall.
  • Return cameras to any London Drugs location.
  • London Drugs will also take computers and monitors.

Where to recycle light bulbs

The CRD bins won’t take light bulbs. You can take them to:

  • Bottle Depot locations
  • Ellice Recycle
  • Alpine Disposal & Recycling
  • Home Hardware on Burnside, in Sidney and in Sooke
  • Island Return It locations
  • London Drugs locations
  • reFUSE

Where to recycle styrofoam

Styrofoam is not easy to recycle, so do your […]