Towards Low-Carbon Urban Metabolism—The Impact of Eliminating Food Waste

This chapter describes the international and local significance of applying circular economy approaches to reduce food waste in cities. The environmental, social and economic impacts of food waste are summarised, and a range of composting technologies available to suit different urban contexts are described. While these technologies are promising, people’s actions remain the critical factor in whether food waste is reduced. Empirical research in Melbourne, Australia shows that participating in on-site composting, and particularly worm-farming, can reduce the volume of food waste to landfill, and provide other benefits such as increasing environmental awareness, connection with nature, and a sense of community among residents and co-workers.