The Federal Government has announced it will invest $77.9 million into new waste and recycling measures.
The new investments into Australia’s recycling and waste industry aim to reduce waste impacts on the environment, create jobs, and grow the economy.
$67 million will be invested in new food organic and garden organic waste (FOGO) initiatives, establishing a Food Waste for Healthy Soils Fund to divert 3.4 million tonnes of organic material from landfill for productive use in agricultural soils.
The fund will generate $401 million in industry value, create up to 2,700 additional jobs and establish an important model for wider recycling and soil partnerships.
$5 million in new funding will go to supporting small and medium sized business to adopt the Australasian Recycling Label, and $5.9 million for additional investments in industry-led national product stewardship schemes to reduce waste and increase resource recovery.
Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association of Australia (WMRR), CEO Gayle Sloan, said the funding will have numerous positive and far-reaching outcomes – from boosting landfill diversion and in turn, driving carbon emissions down, to beneficial reuse within the agricultural sector, allowing it to grow more food. By driving these sectors, we will start to see more and more jobs created and the quality of our soils improved.
“We look forward to the development of meaningful product stewardship schemes that will shift the dial on the way we manage our resources so that we can start to make giant leaps towards the circular economy that we aspire to and must be,” Sloan said.
“As our industry continues to drive circularity by investing in our capacity, capability and technology, we are also excited by the prospect of more end markets coming to the fore for the recycled materials that we produce, particularly with the $15.2 billion infrastructure spend in the budget.
“As all governments start to push forward in their road, rail and community building activities across the country, we’d urge them to look at how they can maximise the use of Australian recycled material in their projects.”
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