The Permacultivator - Journal of Cool Climate Permaculture
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Jill Cockram explores Council's new reuse initiative

Have a backyard project in mind? New gate, a chook house, a glass window for your cold frame? Perhaps you're on the lookout for a refurbished computer or some second hand or remade furniture to do up in your spare time. Instead of heading downtown to purchase new materials, why not check out the Moss Vale Resource Recovery Centre REVIVA (used to be known as the tip). It has had a change of name because there is a new impetus to reduce non-waste in the landfill stream. One man's junk is another man's treasure!

Currently industry uses a lot of the planet's fossil fuel reserves in the production of materials and household goods. As these fuels are non-renewable it makes sense not only to change our consuming habits in favour of renewable goods and processes (farm forestry, solar, wind, tidal power, etc) but also to re-use existing goods containing embodied energy from the production process.


This is where the Moss Vale REVIVA Centre comes in. Many of you have, no doubt, already been there to see what's on offer. As a regular customer, I am constantly surprised at the good condition and the range of goods available that are, on the one hand getting a second lease of life, and on the other hand being saved from landfill. A win, win situation when you know that no-one wants a new landfill site in their suburb/town and yet we are all contributing to the current ones. It's time to make a withdrawal!
For the uninitiated who like to do their bit for the environment, the MVRRC offers the following services:
· green waste recovery to hot composted garden mulch at a reasonable price
· glass recycling
· metal recycling - a good source of chicken wire, corrugated iron/colourbond, star posts, etc
· a large stockpile of recyclable hardwood, softwood and treated pine
· a warehouse full of pre-loved recycled furniture, household goods, paint, electrical goods, books
· a couple of yards full of building materials (eg, windows & doors) and project items for the house & garden (bricks, tiles, gates, bikes, garden tools, mowers, etc).
From time-to-time the centre adds new services, like the lawnmower mechanic who will soon be repairing mowers and whipper-snippers for resale.

Rather than relegating perfectly useable items that you no longer need to the waste stream you can also take saleable materials and items in working order to the REVIVA staff for checking. If the REVIVA staff feel they can re-sell it, you save on dumping fees.

I encourage you to use this fantastic service which, I understand, is practically supporting itself financially. (It's not reliant on ratepayers money to staff it for instance and is hoping to pay its set-up costs in the coming years.) I have heard that Jindabyne is losing its recycling centre set up along similar lines so let's actively support and keep our local REVIVA.

Once the secret is out, the competition with other bargain seekers will increase and the real value of these materials (previously disposed of as waste) will become increasingly evident. Well, actually, with the prices being so affordable, the challenge will be to resist coming home with a trailer load of bargains that you don't really need! Still, I'm sure there is no end to the creativity of backyard self-sufficiency exponents. At worst, the unused items go back for more recycling.
Good hunting!


J47 Spring 2005 -Summer 2006