ABS publish 2018-19 Waste Account – waste generation up

The Waste Account released by the ABS on 6 November 2020 shows that in 2018-19 Australia:

  • generated 76 million tonnes of waste, a 10% increase since 2016-17
  • spent $17 billion on waste services, an 18% increase since 2016-17
  • saw the construction industry spend the most on waste services ($2 billion) up 35% since 2016-17
  • recovered 46 million tonnes or nearly 60% of waste for recycling, energy production or export
  • saw exports remain steady since 2016-17.at 6% of total waste generated

NWRIC CEO Rose Read said the release of the Waste Account was a reminder to all jurisdictions of the need to fast track planning approvals and their waste and recycling initiatives including the investment of the Commonwealth’s $190 million Recycling Modernisation Fund which is still to be matched by the South Australian, Victorian, NSW and Queensland governments.

If Australia is to achieve its National Waste Policy Action Plan target of 80% average recovery rate from all waste streams by 2030 it needs to recover an additional 14 million tonnes per annum.  To do this need we need to dramatically ramp up both our recycling and energy recovery infrastructure.  The industry has a number of recycling projects in development ready for co-investment and energy recovery facilities awaiting planning approvals.

Waste and recycling is not just an essential service it is a vital sector that contributes more than $5.3 billion per annum to Australia’s GDP (enough to build 350 schools).  It is comprised of more than 5,500 small, medium and large businesses with over 36,000 direct jobs.  With each employee generating $150,000 per annum in direct value add, that is more than the overall manufacturing industry.

With fast tracking of government co-investment with industry and planning approvals for new facilities we will not only reach the 80% recovery rate in 2030 but we will also be generating thousands more jobs and inject billions more dollars into the economy. Not to mention increasing resource efficiency and further protecting our environment.


WRIWA wins award for kerbside recycling guidelines

Congratulations to NWRIC’s WA State Affiliate, the Waste and Recycling Industry Association of WA (WRIWA) for winning the Waste Management category in the 2020 Infinity Awards, run by Western Australia’s Waste Authority.

In collaboration with Cleanaway WA, Southern Metropolitan Regional Council, SUEZ WA and WA Local Government Association, WRIWA was instrumental in developing

State-wide guidelines to reduce contamination in kerbside recycling bins.

An A-Z guide was developed to reduce confusion and guide householders in correctly disposing of their waste materials into the right kerbside bin. Nearly every local council with kerbside recycling has adopted the guidelines.

NWRIC CEO Rose Read said WRIWA and its partners who developed the guidelines deserve this recognition.

“The ability of waste and recycling businesses and local government to collaborate quickly in this way demonstrates how together we can develop practical tools that will improve recycling rates, keep recyclables out of landfill and most importantly deliver cleaner inputs for recycling and remanufacturing,” Ms Read said.

“These guidelines and the collaborative approach taken by WA businesses and councils is commended and should be adopted by all states to ensure national consistency in what waste goes into which bin.”

The annual awards recognise individuals, businesses, government, schools, community organisations, not-for-profits and media outlets for their innovative solutions to reduce waste and promote reuse and recycling.

A shortlist of more than 100 nominations were assessed by the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation and the Waste Authority.


Australasian Waste & Recycling Expo is fast approaching

In less than two weeks the premier event for the waste, recycling and resource recovery sector, the Australasian Waste and Recycling Expo will be held online.

The expo will be opened by The Hon Matt Kean MP, Minister for Energy and Environment who will present an overview of the NSW Government’s 20-year strategy and discuss the role of the proposed industry reference group. The Minister will talk about what we can expect and by when and look forward to what the NSW Government foresees as the key positive outcomes and the expectations of the NSW waste management industry.

The session is hosted by NWRIC’s NSW State Affiliate the Waste and Recycling Contractors Association of NSW (WCRA) and chaired by their CEO Tony Khoury.

NWRIC CEO Rose Read said the NSW Government’s 20-year waste strategy was eagerly awaited and looked forward to hearing from the Minister and other panel members at the opening session.

“This is a really important event for the industry, and I would encourage as many people to register for the expo as possible,” Ms Read said.

The Australasian Waste & Recycling Expo is being held from 25-26 November. Click here for more information.


Queensland appoints new Environment Minister

The Queensland Labor Government has announced its new Cabinet which includes the appointment of the Hon Meaghan Scanlon MP as the Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef and Minister for Science and Youth Affairs.

The previous Environment Minister Leeanne Enoch has moved to the portfolios of Communities and Housing, Digital Economy and Arts.

The NWRIC through its Queensland State Affiliate WRIQ looks forward to working with Minister Scanlon in continuing the great work of the previous Minister the Hon. Leeanne Enoch MP.  This includes the creation of a separate EPA and developing Queensland’s recycling, organics and energy recovery infrastructure to build a strong and resilient industry that contributes millions of dollars to the State’s economy, employs thousands of people and protects its environment.

The NWRIC would like to thank the Hon Leeanne Enoch MP for her contribution as Environment Minister including the development and implementation of the Waste Management and Resource Recovery Strategy, the reintroduction of the Waste Levy, implementation of the container deposit scheme Containers for Change, the Plastic Bag Ban and the Plastics Pollution Reduction Plan.

The NWRIC would also like to acknowledge the significant contribution by the Minister and the Queensland Department of Environment and Sciences for facilitating and funding the development of the Battery Recycling Program recently approved by the ACCC.  The Queensland Government together with contributions from other state governments through MEM has been the primary funding source of the Battery Stewardship Council and its previous working groups.

The new Minister’s responsibilities include climate change policy, environmental planning and protection policy, the Great Barrier Reef, pollution and waste management, marine and national parks management, science strategy and youth affairs.

For details of Queensland cabinet members visit https://lnkd.in/gxxnCVZ