The national Recycling Modernisation Fund has been boosted to $250 million with a $60 million new funding stream to tackle problematic plastics such as bread bags and chip packets.
The investment, included in this month’s Federal Budget, builds on the $190 million Recycling Modernisation Fund (RMF) which is driving a $1 billion transformation of the waste and recycling sector.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the Government is committed to stopping harmful plastics from entering our oceans, choking up our waterways and destroying our marine life.
“This new funding stream, dedicated to helping solve the problem of hard to recycle plastic waste, demonstrates our determination to invest in Australian industry, to growing the recycling sector and to creating a stronger economy and stronger future for Australia,” Morrison said.
“Three years ago I made a commitment at the UN to stop plastic waste from entering our oceans, a commitment that has sparked a recycling revolution in Australia.
“That same commitment has supported investment in state-of-the-art recycling technology across Australia, technology that protects the environment, boosts the economy and creates jobs.”
Sussan Ley, Minister for the Environment said the new round of funding will fast-track access to innovative waste technology, supporting a pipeline of plastic products ReMade in Australia.
“The time to act on hard to recycle plastics is now – fast-tracking advanced recycling infrastructure will help the industry recycle more of the 1 million tonnes of plastic packaging waste we generate every year – creating valuable new products while keeping problematic waste out of landfill,” Ley said.
“This Government has placed waste firmly on the national agenda, through our transformation of the recycling sector, landmark waste legislation, National Plastics Plan and through our leadership at the recent UN Environmental Assembly on stopping plastic waste from entering our oceans.
“Australia has set a high bar as the first country in the world to ban the export of waste plastic, we will continue to take strong action on plastics in our own backyard by investing in technology, manufacturing capability and jobs.”
Trevor Evans, Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management said the new round of funding will help increase plastic recycling rates with more access to plastic feedstock.
“The latest round of funding under the Recycling Modernisation Fund will create new demand for recycled materials, giving consumers the confidence that the products they buy are made from recycled content,” Evans said.
“It will also help drive progress on our targets to have 70 per cent of our plastic packaging recycled or composted and 50 per cent of average recycled content in packaging by 2025.”
For more information, visit: www.minister.awe.gov.au