The South Australia Environment Minister has emphasised the value of the waste and resource recovery to the state economy when releasing the latest waste strategy.
Speaking at the 2015 KESAB Waste & Sustainability Expo on 13 November, Ian Hunter confirmed that South Australia’s Waste Strategy 2015-2020 maps a way to reducing landfill from 2003 levels by 35 per cent
He said the plan looks to build on the state’s impressive commitment to waste reduction and recycling over the past 10 years while recognising the potential for growth in the waste management sector in the next five years.
The new strategy has ambitious goals, aiming to divert 90 per cent of metropolitan construction and demolition waste, 80 per cent of metropolitan commercial and industrial waste, and 70 per cent of metropolitan household kerbside waste by 2020.
Commenting on the strategy, Mr Hunter said: “It outlines plans for making South Australia a place where community and businesses continue to work towards zero waste strategies and programs locally, nationally and internationally.
“The value of the waste management and resource recovery industry shouldn’t be underestimated; it’s a major player in the state’s economy with an annual turnover of around $1 billion, employing around 4,800 people in a wide range of jobs.To put it in perspective, the waste and resource recovery industry is similar in economic value to the fishing and aquaculture industry, and similar in terms of employment to the water industry,” he concluded.
Minister Hunter thanked the many organisations and individuals that contributed comments during consultation for the Waste Strategy, as well as those who have offered input into the SA Government’s planned reforms to the sector.
“We’ve been working closely with industry to identify what the sector needs to continue to grow – and create more jobs and business opportunities – and we’ll announce those reforms soon,” added Mr Hunt.