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About the author


Gary Warden was raised in the Perth Hills. After graduating from the University of Western Australia with a degree in Geology, Gary joined BHP Billiton where he spent 18 years working in a variety of roles in a number of locations around the world. Prior to leaving BHP Billiton in December 2006, Gary was Global Manager for the company's US$1Billion business improvement program.

While he was originally sceptical about the claims relating to climate change, he became convinced of the urgency of the issue in early 2006. He left BHP Billiton primarily to spend more time with his young family, but also to dedicate himself to creating a more sustainable life for himself and his family and to support others in making that change.

In September 2007 he was trained by Al Gore and has delivered the "Inconvenient Truth" lectures to thousands of west australians since then. In November 2007 Gary ran for the senate in the Federal Election representing the Climate Change Coalition.

In addition to his climate change lectures, he has facilitated Living Smart workshops across Perth. Between 2008 and 2009 he was on the Executive Committee of the Conservation Council of Western Australia including one year as Vice President.

Gary co-founded and is Executive Director of the very exciting Days of Change program, one of the largest sustainability programs in Australia and is now General Manager WA for Eco-Kinetics, one of the largest Solar PV companies in Australia and subsidiary of ASX-listed CBD Energy.

Home Brew More Sustainable

by Gary 4/24/2009 11:36:00 AM

An analysis by Brett Menzel has shown that the environmental impact of home-brew beer is less than for beer purchased in glass stubbies or aluminium cans as a result of its relatively lower transported volume and weight, less packaging materials and the reusability of the PET final bottles.

The environmentally aware consumer is faced with a perplexing array of marketing and sales-driven product options in today’s retail outlets; options that will almost certainly have a range of different environmental impacts. 

For the Australian beer consumer, in addition to beer styles and alcohol strengths, there is a large range of packaging, volume and convenience-level alternatives. 

The analysis found that Home-brew offers the beer consumer a choice that has a lower life cycle environmental impact compared with glass stubbies and aluminium cans.  The relatively lower environmental impact results from lower transport weight and volume, the reusability and ultimate recycle ability of PET and the greater utility of the concentrate.

Home-brew beer is also the most economically favourable option although it is considerably more time consuming and less convenient than stubbies or cans and unfortunately convenience is more strongly marketed and sought after by the consumer than a lower environmental impact. 

References

Brezet, H. and Van Hemel, C. (eds.) 1997, Eco-Design: a promising approach to sustainable production and consumption, United Nations Environment Program, Paris.

Coopers 2008, Environment - water usage, Coopers Brewery Limited.  S.A. Retrieved March 8, 2008, from http://www.coopers.com.au/environment.php?pid=2

EcoRecycle Victoria 2004, Information sheet 7 - Glass.  Retrieved March 8, 2008, from http://www.sustainability.vic.gov.au/resources/documents/Info_7_-_Glass.doc

The Aluminium can group n.d, retrieved March 9, 2008, from http://www.aluminium-cans.com.au/Facts2.html

 

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4/24/2009 3:53:35 PM

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4/25/2009 11:22:55 PM

Peg Davies

Hi Gary
Re the home brew story. The 'residue' from making beer is very good for the compost.

Peg

Peg Davies