Queensland’s new Waste Management and Resource Recovery Strategy aims to provide a legal framework to support industry growth and sustained waste reduction.
Targets for 2050 include a recycling rate of 75 per cent for all waste types and a 25 per cent reduction in household waste.
Additionally, the state government will invest $100 million over the next three years for new and expanded waste management facilities.
Australian Council of Recycling (ACOR) CEO Pete Shmigel said the strategy was the most innovative in Australia.
“Queensland has set a new and very welcome high standard with its Waste Management and Resource Recovery Strategy,” Mr Shmigel said.
“The state government has truly recognised the combined environmental and economic benefits of optimised resource recovery and a circular economy.”
Mr Shmigel said the Resource Recovery Industry Road Map was particularly significant, and highlighted forward facing infrastructure funding.
“It’s about quality jobs based on demand for recycled content products as much as it is about trucks and tonnes. That is a great shift in approach,” Mr Shmigel said.
Mr Shmigel said ACOR also welcomed new levy arrangements for contaminated residuals from legitimate recycling and remanufacturing operations.
“The community and stakeholders are right to expect results from the new strategy and the new levy – whether it’s reinvestment in recycling, or pursuing the proximity principle when it comes to waste management,” Mr Shmigel said.
“We look forward to working with the Queensland Government to deliver on the strategy’s huge potential.”
ACOR outlined five critical implementation jobs for the state government:
— Ensure the new waste levy is effective in curtailing the interstate movement of waste, including strong cross-border coordination, monitoring, measurement and disclosure.
— Establish further targets for state and local government for procurement of recycled content products.
— Full transparency and regular reporting of strategy results.
— Use newly available resources to improve regulatory performance by agencies and facilitate a level playing field for operators.
— Make sure kerbside recycling and CDS systems work in a complementary way.