#WasteWed needs your help….

Posted on March 2, 2011


#WasteWed is an idea I had a few months ago, totally inspired by the #testittuesday and #thinkthursday campaigns used by the Fire Services.

I wanted an online campaign, that would give people  something to talk about on a weekly basis but it had to serve a purpose and have an outcome.  I looked at Waste Services as it’s a universal service, it reaches everyone and it’s human nature to talk about things we are good at.

I’m fortunate that our residents are pretty good at recycling, we recycle 50% of all our waste and have the highest recycling rate in Scotland.  This is in part due to demographics, in part to the system the service have in place and is supplemented by great waste awareness.

But…we need to get more out of our mixed waste stream and more into our recyclables so a campaign on FB and twitter with weekly themes about recycling seemed a good idea. It would be a good prompt for those who choose to engage with us to think about their own behaviour, share their stories and generally keep the awareness of waste up there. There’s so many areas to recycling that I thought we could run and run with it without ever really running out of good material.

I had the opportunity to speak to Elle Flett at Norfolk Fire & Rescue today, she’s behind the fabulously simple but effective #testittuesday and was very modest about her achievements. She did give me some good advice though and was really positive about the campaign.  One of the first things she saidwas ‘I’m not really sure about the campaign tag’ and on reflection I think she’s right.

#WasteWed isn’t really engaging, we chatted some more and tried to find a tag that people would want to engage with.  We arrived at #LoveWaste or #LoveyourWaste as we want to connect people to the action and although we might still run it on a Wed by tagging it #WasteWed we were limiting ourselves to just one day a week.

So far I’ve spoken to people in my council about the campaign,  to @ZeroWasteScot, the national body who promote recycling in Scotland and to a few people on Twitter and everyone’s been really supportive and interested.

ZeroWasteScotland are going to support the campaign by producing themes for the first wee while, until our council and any other council who wants to join in find our feet and are comfortable with leading activity in our own area.  The idea is to not create too much work for council’s to start with and to try and have a consistent theme.  We’ll tie into national events as well like National Compost Week and so on.

The important part is that the campign themes will have to be a benefit to the end user instead of banging on about carbon footprints and the like.  To launch on 16th March it’s likely to be about money saving.  ZeroWasteScotland will be launching an app that lets you put your leftover ingredients in, give it a wee shake and out pops a recipe so the food you were going to chuck will be used and you won’t have wasted your money. We’ll then invite people to post their favourite leftover recipes to get some discussion going.

Eventually I’d like to see all council’s that are active on Twitter and FB using it, I had the idea but I don’t own it, it will only be a success if we get all the minds we can on it and share ideas about what may or may not work.

As you’ve read this far I’d like to invite your comments on what might work, what you might like to see and let me know if your Council would be interested in joining in. Do you have another suggestion for tag that could be used instead. I’m quite excited about the potential of the campaign and I’d like to hear what people have to say on it.