Select Brisbane residents will have the chance to pilot a new app, which aims to educate Australians on correct recycling practices, before its national launch.
Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management Trevor Evans said the app will provide valuable recycling information.
“This cutting-edge new app, developed by Australian Council of Recycling (ACOR), is Australia’s first photo recognition recycling app,” he said. “Users photograph an item and then immediately find out where it can be recycled, refurbished or disposed of, based on their geolocation.
“Now is the opportunity for the Brisbane community to provide feedback on recycling.”
The Recycle Mate app uses artificial intelligence to classify rubbish and find the best disposal solution for that product. The app’s artificial intelligence is continually improved, with users able to add to the app’s database every time an image is uploaded.
Evans said the application will contribute to promoting a national circular economy.
“When Australians get their recycling right, it helps us to recycle more of our waste resources so that they can be processed and made into valuable new products, as well as protecting our unique environment by keeping our waste out of landfill,” Evans said.
“Another major benefit is that the app helps us avoid contamination and wish-cycling. Contamination occurs when materials are sorted into the wrong recycling bin and can lead to recycling resources being sent to landfill. Wish-cycling is when people simply throw something into the recycling bin, and contaminate it, in the hope that it can be recycled.
“The new Recycle Mate app will help make sure that we dispose of products properly all the time, no matter where we are.”
Recycle Mate, an initiative of the Australian Council of Recycling (ACOR), received $2 million from the Australian Government’s Environment Restoration Fund program.
Brisbane residents can access the app via the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.