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MEDIA RELEASE - Council saves 182 tonnes from landfill

26 March 2019

Not one single piece of recycling from the Glenelg Shire Council was directed to landfill during Australia’s recent recycling crisis, a positive outcome from a crippling state wide shut down.

For almost five weeks the shire’s recycling processor SKM Recycling, which handles half of Victoria’s waste, did not take any recycling loads after it ceased operation following a ruling by the EPA (Environment Protection Agency) due to stockpiling and a growing fire risk. This was largely due to China refusing to process any of Australia’s mixed recyclables in late 2018.

Council’s waste contractor Wimmera Mallee Waste stored more than 182 tonnes of recyclables, saving it from landfill during this period, including 143 tonnes of kerbside collection and 38 tonnes of transfer station waste.

Glenelg Shire Mayor Cr Anita Rank said this equated to 36 collection trucks or 12 semi-trailer loads of local waste.

“To see not one single bottle go into landfill during this waste crisis is an absolute credit to all involved,” Cr Rank said.

“We are extremely proud of the work of Wimmera Mallee Waste and other recycling partners who have worked tirelessly during this crisis to ensure work was maintained. Importantly kerbside collections continued to run as normal during this difficult period with no pressure transferred onto households or businesses.

“Our council worked with contractors to make every reasonable effort to not allow the work of our communities recycling efforts go to waste during this period, and the hard work has paid off.”

Cr Rank said the community should be credited for its ongoing sustainability efforts, taking particular motivation from campaigns such as the ABC’s War on Waste series.

“Our shire punches above its weight when it comes to recycling. Right across our household’s people are making a conscious effort to do the right thing and ensure waste is not directed to landfill,” Cr Rank said.

“Of particular note is the work being done in our education community. Some of our best recyclers are our youngest residents putting these recycling skills to work in their classrooms. They are working hard to learn lifelong skills towards reducing their waste and growing their own food, moving away from the reliance on packaged goods.”

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