Recycling package not adequate to deal with crisis

Despite promises of big spending to tackle the ongoing recycling crisis from the State Government, Central Goldfields Shire chief administrator Noel Harvey has claimed the latest round of funding is “totally inadequate” to deal with the issue.

The 2019-20 state budget allocated a $34.9 million package of recycling reforms to tackle the challenges facing the recycling industry and to help reduce plastic pollution.

The package comes after the Chinese import ban on 24 types of recyclable wastes sent shockwaves through Australia’s recycling industry when it was announced last year, with some companies cutting kerbside recycling collec- tions.

This month the government released a break down of its recycling package, which includes a $14.3 million Recycling Industry Development Fund designed to enhance Victoria’s domestic remanufacturing capabilities, and will target secondary processing infrastructure for priority materials such as paper, cardboard and plastics.

An additional $13.8 million program will provide incentives for new entrants to the Victorian recycling market, diversifying the sector and leading to more investment in equipment and infrastructure upgrades.

However, Mr Harvey said the funding is not enough for councils to successfully resolve the issue.

“A $35 million fund across 79 councils goes nowhere near solving the problem because most of that money will go into facilities to treat recycled products, it doesn’t actually solve the problem we have as a council in terms of costs of disposal,” he said.

“It’s just a totally inadequate contribution and recognition of the problems local government faces in this area.”

For more on this story see Page 5 of The Advertiser, Friday, June 21

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