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Waste and recycling on the Gold Coast

Information about waste and recycling services on the Gold Coast is available in one central location.

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Reduce home waste

You can reduce the amount of household waste you generate by using Gold Coast recycling services effectively and adopting ‘precycling’. You'll be surprised at how much less rubbish ends up in your bin, which will take you a long way towards ‘Greening the GC’.

Under the waste management hierarchy, avoiding waste is the best option, followed closely by reducing waste and then reusing waste. Recycling waste is last on this list because it still uses energy and resources in transport and processing.

  • Avoid buying goods you don’t need because this generates excess waste.
  • Reduce the amount of waste you generate at home by efficiently using the things you buy.
  • Reuse items wherever possible. Alternatively, if they are in good condition, donate them to a charity for reuse.
  • Recycle whatever remains after these steps and only dispose of what cannot be recycled.


We have all bought items with excessive packaging that only ends up going straight in the bin. Precycling is preventing waste before it happens by buying products responsibly to minimise the amount of waste we generate, thus saving precious resources - and money.

Precycling means thinking about what we buy and how it is packaged and making environmentally responsible decisions. Wherever possible, choose products with minimal packaging or those that are packaged in recycled materials. After all, the only way to be a true recycler is to make sure you buy recycled products.

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Become a precycler at home by:

  • buying loose instead of pre-packaged fruit and vegetables
  • buying goods that have minimal or recycled packaging
  • refusing plastic bags at the check-out if you only have a couple of items to carry
  • taking reusable carrier bags (green bags) when shopping to avoid having to use plastic bags at the checkout
  • choosing to buy goods that last instead of the disposable variety (such as pens and razors)
  • reusing cardboard boxes to carry groceries and other goods
  • buying consumables in bulk to reduce packaging
  • putting a ‘No Junk Mail’ sign on your mailbox if you don’t want advertising material
  • storing left-over food in reusable plastic containers instead of using plastic wrap
  • using rechargeable batteries instead of disposable ones
  • reusing gift wrap and ribbons
  • buying concentrated products such as laundry powders
  • using mugs instead of paper or styrofoam cups, cloth napkins instead of paper towels or serviettes and handkerchiefs instead of tissues
  • using fewer disposable nappies and more reusable cloth nappies
  • using cotton cloths when cleaning instead of paper towels or disposable cloths. Recycle old clothes and bedding into cleaning rags
  • repairing electrical appliances when they break rather than throwing them out
  • borrowing or renting items you may only use occasionally rather than buying them
  • minimising the use of disposable plates, cutlery and cups when entertaining by using durable ones you can wash and use again
  • using a water filter to purify water for drinking rather than buying bottled water

Green household cleaning

Many chemicals are used to keep homes clean and smelling fresh, but did you know there are also plenty of natural products and do-it-yourself cleaners that will achieve the same results but are better for the environment?

Some tips to get you started:

  • homemade glass cleaner can be prepared in a spray bottle from equal parts water and white vinegar
  • use a toilet brush and baking soda to keep your toilet bowl clean. Using coloured toilet disinfectant adds unnecessary chemicals to the wastewater system which eventually ends up in our waterways

Take action in the garden

Creating a more sustainable garden and doing your bit for the environment is easy for the keen home gardener. Although a drier climate and ongoing water restrictions present challenges, recycling food scraps and green organics can provide nutrient-rich compost for your garden and keep valuable resources out of landfill.

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