Waste Management Update

Waste Management Update image
Chris Wilson - Manager Infrastructure and Airport with Bridget Archer MP - Liberal Member for Bass

As many of you would know, Council has been working on a Waste Management Strategy.   This strategy is about how Council will deal with the various amounts and types of rubbish that residents dispose at the Whitemark landfill and the Lady Barron and Killiecrankie waste transfer stations.

In the last year, two key pieces of legislation have been passed by the Tasmanian Government that will have a significant effect on how waste is dealt with on the Island.

The first piece of legislation is the Container Refund Scheme (CRS).   Under the scheme, consumers will receive a 10-cent refund for every eligible container they recycle through a refund point.   This scheme is due to begin in 2022, however, the state government is still in the process of appointing a company to manage the scheme.   As the scheme is yet to be finalised, Council is yet to receive the details on exactly how the scheme will operate.  

Even though Council has minimal details on how the scheme will operate, it must still develop a range of plans that gives Council the flexibility to deal with the effect on the waste streams.

The second piece of important legislation is the Waste and Recovery Bill 2021.   This is also referred to as the Landfill Levy.   This legislation takes effect on 1st July 2022 and establishes a state-wide levy that applies to all waste that is deposited into a landfill. More information here - Landfill Levy FAQs | Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania (nre.tas.gov.au)

The levy starts at $20 per tonne with two increases of $20 per tonne every second year.   Therefore by 2026, the levy will be $60 per tonne (excluding any CPI increases).

A key purpose of the new infrastructure at the Whitemark landfill, will be to separate the potential recyclable products from the waste so as to minimise the amount of waste being deposited into the landfill and therefore reduce the amount of money paid to the government under the levy.

Council has been successful in receiving grant funding through the Recycling Modernisation Fund from State and Federal Governments to purchase additional equipment to help with sorting the different recyclable materials from waste.   The upgrade will include a sorting shed, sorting line and conveyor and a commercial glass pulveriser and shipping containers.

Regarding the recent works to the upgrade of the waste facility; the underground leachate pipework has been constructed, and construction of the new building commenced this week.

When the new landfill levy commences on 1st July, the landfill attendant will be inspecting every load, as Council will be required to provide a detailed report to the government each month on the quantity and type of materials that have been accepted.   The information will also be used to calculate the landfill levy fee Council will pay for that month.

There are a lot of other matters happening at the same time, however Council is committed to improving the landfill and transfer stations.

In a nutshell, Council’s objective is to reduce to a minimum, the amount of materials going into the landfill and maximise the amount of materials being recycled.

Chris Wilson
Manager Infrastructure & Airport

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