FOGO diversion from landfill is one of the cheapest global warming abatement options. It is also relatively easy to do and should be prioritised by Government.
MRA’s Mike Ritchie has welcomed the recently released NSW ALP War on Waste policy to invest waste levy funds back into the circular economy.
The Recycling and War on Waste policy released by Michael Daley
and Penny Sharpe is an important step towards creating the circular economy and
achieving a more sustainable balance between the economy and the environment”
Since Mike’s article on Saving Kerbside Recycling was written, the Victorian EPA has temporarily closed down the three SKM MRFs in Melbourne, due to fire risk associated with stockpiles.
Over 20 Councils have either suspended their kerbside recycling services or they are sending their recyclables to landfill.
It has now been over a year since China introduced its National Sword policy to restrict the importation of kerbside recyclable materials from the rest of the world. The purpose of the policy was to increase the recovery of domestically generated recyclables within China and further boost its own manufacturing. The new rule is a 0.5% contamination rate in Australian exported material. Few Australian Materials Recovery Facilities (MRF) were built for that level of purity.
With landfill levies in NSW at $140.20/t you would think that sorting of commercial waste would be more common than it is. Less than 5% of the Commercial and Industrial (C&I) waste in NSW is put through a processing plant to recover the valuable materials. In other words, less than 120,000t of the 5.5 MT that is generated is put through a processing plant. There are no dedicated C&I sorting facilities in other States (and landfill levies are lower).
According to the 2016 National Waste Report, Commercial and Industrial waste (C&I) represents 20 MT of the 53 MT of waste generated in Australia (or 40% of generation). It also represents 34% of all waste sent to landfill (or 7.2MT out of 21MT) and achieves a 64% recovery rate compared to C&D (64%) and MSW (51%).
Not bad in the scheme of things.
If you haven’t heard it already, the household recycling industry is in all sorts of trouble. 2018 is going to be a troubled year for most MRFs (Materials Recovery Facilities) and therefore their council clients.
The Chinese National Sword policy has bitten and bitten hard. National Sword is the Chinese government’s mechanism to restrict import licences for recycled product and limit contamination rates of those recyclables to less than 0.5%.