Man turns trash into treasure, earns ₹56 lakh a year by doing dumpster diving. Here's how

Man turns trash into treasure, earns ₹56 lakh a year by doing dumpster diving. Here’s how

Jul 11, 2024 07:14 PM IST

The man made up to $100,000 Australian dollars (approx. 56 lakh) by searching through Sydney’s trash heaps for undiscovered treasures and then selling them.

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, which stands true in Leonardo Urbano, a 30-year-old Sydney resident who hit a “gold mine” in the city’s trash. Last year, Urbano made up to $100,000 Australian dollars (approx. 56 lakh) by searching through Sydney’s trash heaps for undiscovered treasures and then selling them. Among his findings were wads of cash, coffee makers, gold jewellery, and even a Fendi bags, as per reports.

The man found useful items from the trash and sold them. (Unsplash )

After breakfast every morning, Urbano would go in his car or ride a bicycle and search Sydney’s streets for trash mounds, discovering something new every day. “You could see mountains of stuff — like literally, mountains. And that’s when I find most of the stuff. That’s where the big items will be, like fridges and wardrobes and couches. My friends are shocked at how much good clothing, like perfect clothing, ends up in the trash,” he told CNBC Make It. (Also Read: Nearly 20,000,000 kg waste collected in a year: How these Mumbai-based founders are tackling the city’s waste problem)

Urbano claimed to have made about $200 on the sale of a tiny Fendi purse. He stated that he searches for legitimate luxury items by comparing the serial numbers on websites such as Entropy. He claimed to also confer with acquaintances who are high-end merchandisers.

As for the electronics that he finds, Urbano speculates that the large and heavy electronics were abandoned as they are too difficult to handle or carry.

What all did Urbano found in trash?

As per CNBC Make It, he has collected over 50+ television sets, 30 fridges, 20+ washing machines, 50 computers/laptops, up to 15 couches, 50 vacuums and more. Urbano refers to himself as “The Trash Lawyer” because he advocates for the ability of “trash” to survive. He told CNBC that he has been doing dumpster diving for the past four years and has used the money to pay his rent and make a living.

Australia produced about 75.8 million tons of garbage in fiscal year 2020–2021, according to the country’s most recent biennial national waste report. That is over a 3% increase over the 2018–2019 fiscal year. Landfills receive around 30% of the trash produced.

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