Three Western Australian councils will build a ‘Super Tip’ near the town of Mount Barker to store recyclable materials.
Denmark, Albany and Plantagenet Shires have planned to develop a shared waste facility on Crown land in order to centralise a collection area for plastics, oil, metal, electronic waste, car bodies and other recyclable materials.
ABC News reported it comes after Plantagenet Shire had to shut down its recycling transfer stations due to increased transport costs and a slump in prices received for recyclable commodities.
All recyclables collected in regional WA are transported to Perth for processing, which affects council profit.
“Even smaller regional areas are saying the cost of disposal of waste is going up exponentially, it’s also one of those cost centres that is increasing faster than others,” Plantagenet Shire chief executive Robert Stewart told ABC News.
He said discussions between councils and government to consolidate the waste generated from the three shires onto a 24-hectare site adjacent to the Plantagenet waste facility were “making good progress”.
Regional tip facilities are reliant upon good commodity prices to bring buyers to collect the stockpiles, without this ratepayers and councils may bear the brunt of costs.
“There’s a huge expectation in our community that our recycling is handled well, that we are looking after the environment, but there’s also a belief that because we are dealing commodities like metal or aluminium that we will be able to provide that service at minimal or no cost.
“But these days everything we have here whether it’s aluminium or steel, whether it’s plastic whether it’s e-waste, whether it’s oil whether it’s cars — it all costs us money to treat properly.”
Mr Stewart said the ABC’s War On Waste program had triggered discussions about how regional communities dealt with waste.
“We are experiencing many more questions about what is happening to our waste and what is happening to our recycling I’m taking that very seriously because it is a question that we need to ask,” he said.