'Disgusting' bin discovery off iconic Aussie street baffles shop owner

The man said he was 'in shock' over how such a mess occurs.

A furious Sydney store owner has unleashed after finding the alleyway behind his business completely trashed, blanketed in garbage with rubbishing overflowing from bins covering almost the entire footpath.

The man shared a photo of the "shocking" view of the Newtown back lane on social media, stating he "really doesn't understand how or why this is a thing". Other locals were quick to respond the chaos behind the iconic King Street, with many sharing what they believed caused the "disgusting" mess.

One man speculated that the mayhem was byproduct of people participating in the return and earn recycling scheme — where certain drink containers are able to be returned for a refund through a NSW container deposit — claiming that disrespectful people were responsible for the mess.

A trash covered alleyway in Newtown.
Bin chickens or return and earn participants? Source: Facebook.

"It is one of the side effects of the recycling scheme. People now raid bins because they can make money from doing it," he said on Facebook. "Just like how removing 'single-use' plastic bags from supermarkets increased sales of plastic bags.

"Short-sighted thinking that leads to negative results. The recycling deposit was designed to get people to recycle more, it has created a culture of the poor raiding materials already heading for recycling."

Dumpster divers or bin chickens?

While the man's claims are plausible, one person pointed out that "I don't know if that's true — as there is a recyclable bottle on the ground".

Many others suggested the possibility that cheeky ibis's were behind the mess, with one person suggesting "a bin chicken party" was to blame.

"I’ve seen bin chickens make this mess. You’ll need bin locks to stop them getting into them," a person wrote. "This looks like it is caused by birds, they make such a mess. If you can put chain and lock on the bins that will help," another said.

The alleyway on a cleaner day.
The alleyway on a cleaner day. Source: Google Maps.

Another local said the mess was a regular occurrence in the alleyway. "Some of our laneways are a disgrace," he wrote.

Responding to the post, Pauline Lockie, local independent councillor and former Deputy Mayor of Inner West Council, said authorities were on the case. "Thanks for reporting this to council already and I'm sorry that you've had to deal with this," Ms Lockie said.

"I'm sure the laneway is already on our cleansing and waste team's radar given all the signage about littering and dumping, but I'll have a chat to council staff about what further actions we may be able to take about this laneway in future."

What do you think?

Inner West bin decision attracts criticism

Meanwhile, anger has continued to mount over a Inner West Council's decision to collect red lid bins once every two weeks, with one councillor admitting they hadn’t consulted locals in impacted suburbs properly.

Garbage bins in the Inner West Council are now being collected fortnightly - and not weekly - as part of changes to the council’s waste strategy.

In just a few weeks, many households across suburbs like Balmain, Tempe, Annadale and Leichhardt will need to place their food scraps into green food organic and garden organic (FOGO) bins, which will emptied weekly.

Sanitary products, nappies and pet litter will remain red bin items, which will be collected fortnightly.

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