Bin crisis still biting
Victorian councils are making changes in an attempt to deal with an ongoing recycling crisis.
Since the collapse of contractor SKM Recycling and international policies limiting options to export waste, councils are working individually to implement a range of measures.
Moyne Shire Council has voted to introduce a fourth bin for glass, which will follow trials of a fourth bin in the City of Yarra and Macedon Ranges Shire.
“We actually have a local roads contractor who is looking to use glass in its road making, so they're actually going to receive our glass for a six-month trial,” Moyne Shire Council's director of infrastructure Trevor Greenberger said.
Ballarat City Council has this week removed glass from kerbside recycling.
Mayor Samantha McIntosh said the council’s new contractor would not accept glass because it could shatter in bins and contaminate the other recyclable materials, lessening their value.
Ratepayers are now being asked to take glass to one of eight drop-off sites around the city, or simply put it into landfill.
“If we were to add an extra bin and do an extra pick up from the home it would be an extra $4 million hence an extra $80 on average to each of the ratepayers,” Cr McIntosh said.
“We are also working with our community from an education perspective … really encouraging people to be creative with the glass product they do have in their homes.
“It's a very difficult thing to introduce change of such a degree. It would be much better to have a State Government policy that ensures our whole state is aligned and has the same process.”
The Victorian Government says it is working towards a broader approach to waste management, including a major overhaul of kerbside collection to reduce contamination and make it easier to recycle.
It has also put up $10 million loan to clear the former SKM sites so council collections can resume.
The Municipal Association of Victoria says the state needs a container deposit scheme and for more recycling infrastructure in regional areas.