Corporate Sustainability at Currumbin RSL Makes You Feel Proud

Mark is Currumbin RSL Environmental Warrior
Mark Elley is an integral cog in the wheel when it comes to sustainability at Currumbin RSL.

Our ‘Dishy’ is fiercely passionate, continuously observing ways to improve systems, champions usage and educates staff. You’d be hard pressed to find a more committed and passionate Eco Warrior!


Mark’s passion for the environment was ignited whilst doing a Geography degree in the late 80’s. These values were embedded with the positive influence of many ‘green’ lecturers.

We were blessed when Mark began working here on New Year’s Day in 2008. He is a major driver behind ensuring our food waste is placed in the correct bins. Mark’s idea of rewelding the bench to include double port holes has made food recycling an efficient process in our kitchen. The port holes allow staff to separate food waste into either a compost (leftover food) bin or a land fill (bottle tops, non-recyclable plastics) bin. By ensuring food waste doesn’t go to landfill means less methane omissions and instead is reused and made into compost by our partners in Yatala.

The presence of the Bio Bin has enabled us to reduce our landfill by more than 50%. It takes a month to fill the Bio Bin. Mark explains “80% of food is moisture so we have to add dry carbon, like saw dust, hay, straw and shredded paper. We get saw dust from Currumbin Woodworks which helps them reduce their land fill and in turn helps us to stop the bio bin from becoming like soggy porridge! When they don’t have enough saw dust we then use hay bales and shredded paper from the office.”

Packaging also adds significantly to our waste also and Mark laughs “Everything comes in cardboard! During a big week like ANZAC Day we fill up to forty commingle bins and on a quieter week we still fill twenty five commingle bins.” Commingled waste bins are where tin, glass and hard plastic can be recycled.  We have sixty commingle bins on site to cater for big events. Each week we generate three jumbo bins of land fill waste, three large cardboard cages of recycling and at least 25 bins of commingled waste.

We also source environmentally friendly chemicals from JASOL for cleaning, hygiene and bench sanitisers.

Occasionally Mark takes off his Eco Warrior hat and picks up his bass guitar to perform live with Australian country icon Lee Conway in the Banderas Band playing classic rock, blues and country covers as well as originals in venues on the Gold Coast and northern NSW.

So much talent in one extremely humble soul. We are so honoured to have such a remarkable person dedicating so much of his time doing his part in making this world a better place to live and helping us to become a sustainable, environmentally friendly Club.

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