You may have seen some quirky characters appearing up on the City of Cockburn’s social media feeds in recent weeks. These are the members of Cockburn’s GREAT Gang – the subjects of a new waste education campaign with a twist.
Local comedian, Adrian Alaberg, was commissioned to write and star in the campaign, in the hopes that his trademark brand of cheeky humour would help to engage residents with a message of sustainability.
The series features six videos in total, five of these focus on individual characters based on the State Waste Authority’s GREAT acronym for reducing waste – Giving, Recycling, Earthcycling, Avoiding waste and Taking hazardous waste to drop off points.
Each video provides helpful tips for how to reduce personal waste with some laughs sprinkled in for good measure.
Mr Alaberg said he was thrilled to have the opportunity to mix his comedy craft with a sustainable message.
"I loved working on this project. Making comedy is my passion and it was awesome to be able to do what I love for an important cause,” said Mr Alaberg.
“I wanted to give the videos a bit more energy than your traditional waste education piece and create something that really grabs the viewers' attention. I'm hoping the project can give Cockburn residents the motivation and information they need to begin making more sustainable lifestyle choices (and have a laugh along the way).
“I've always appreciated the importance of sustainability, but since working on the GREAT gang project, it has become top of mind for me. I often find myself quoting the lyrics when figuring out which bins to sort my own waste into. I have no doubt the catchy message will get stuck in the viewer's head and help them live more sustainably."
The series was filmed, edited and directed by SoCo Studios, and was primarily funded by a Waste Sorted Community Education Grant from the WA Waste Authority.
The amount of waste produced in Australia rises by about 1% every year. However, there is only a finite amount of landfill available to store it – and this has grown increasingly expensive as levies climb.
Reducing the amount of waste going to landfill saves the City and its residents money and it saves the environment from harm.
The City’s Waste Education Coordinator, Clare Courtauld, said the campaign will help to raise awareness around waste reduction.
“Ideally we need to all try to avoid creating waste in the first place. This means making smart choices when shopping and avoiding heavily packaged products,” said Ms Courtauld.
“We know this isn’t always possible, so the next best option is to make sure our waste is reused, rather than simply thrown out. These videos are designed to engage people with that message and to point them towards resources that the City provides to help.”
Watch the campaign's videos.