Already used extensively in the USA, a BigBelly solar powered compactor rubbish bin is now being trialed by Sydney’s Mosman Council
As mentioned in a previous story on BigBelly, the solar powered bin automatically compacts rubbish at the point of disposal, decreasing the amount of space taken up by rubbish by around 80%.
The bin has been installed at Balmoral and Mosman Council hopes the trial will demonstrate a reduction of of litter overflow and waste ending up in local waterways, particularly over the warmer months. Council says the increased capacity reduces the number of times the bin needs to be emptied and as a result can cut related fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions by 80%.
BigBelly bins include a polycrystalline solar panel protected by a layer of polycarbonate. The compactor exerts a force of 570 kg and the bin’s DC motor is powered by a 12 volt deep cycle battery maintained by a solar regulator that controls the charging level. Battery storage allows the bin to compact rubbish even under overcast conditions and at night.
BigBelly bins are becoming increasingly prevalent in cities around the USA. The City of Philadelphia in the USA saved nearly USD$900,000 in the first year of using the bins and projects savings of USD$13 million over ten years.
Kitsap County in Washington has 80 bins installed and according to the County’s Special Projects Director, savings of around US$48,000 a year in fuel and maintenance costs will be realised and USD$61,000 in labor that can be diverted to other tasks.