REDcycle clean-up extended to increase recycling options

redcycle clean-up

The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has amended Clean-up Notices issued to Coles and Woolworths, giving the supermarkets more time to manage the recovery, recycling and lawful removal of soft plastic stockpiled across the state as part of the REDcycle program.

The supermarkets applied to the NSW EPA for an extension after identifying possible pathways to keep most of the soft plastics out of landfill.

The supermarkets have been granted an additional 10 months to comply with the notices until March 2025. This will ensure that the identified processing solution is operating at sufficient capacity to handle the stockpiled material.

The EPA required the supermarkets to submit a staged removal plan to track the progress of the supermarkets under the revised timeline.

Coles and Woolworths moved more than 5000 tonnes of soft plastic material to safe storage in 2023,  meeting their immediate clean-up obligations to address the potential fire and pollution risk posed by 15 stockpiles found across New South Wales.

NSW EPA Director Operations Adam Gilligan said revising the time period gives the supermarkets an opportunity to secure a solution for the material so that the vast majority of the material doesn’t end up in landfill.”

“We know the public, who diligently collected and dropped off their soft plastics, has been disappointed in Redcycle and the best outcome for this material is to see it recycled and reprocessed,” Gilligan said.

“We will continue to monitor the progress of the supermarkets under the Clean-up notices including inspecting the current stockpiles to ensure they continue to be stored appropriately.”

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