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More than $1million to help communities recycle problem wastes

More than $1 million has been awarded to six councils to help them build facilities where household problem wastes like oils, paints and gas bottles can be safely recycled, the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment announced.

DPIE Executive Director Circular Economy and Resource Management Sanjay Sridher said $1.125 million would go towards developing new Community Recycling Centres, which are permanent drop-off centres for common household problem wastes that can’t be collected through kerbside collection services.

“Community Recycling Centres are designed to capture those tricky items that can’t go in the bin – things like motor oils, car batteries, even old fluoro lightbulbs,” Mr Sridher said.

“These kinds of items have materials in them that can’t be processed through our kerbside systems, but through community recycling centres most of these problem wastes can be reused or recycled.

“This new round of funding means residents in six more local government areas will soon have access to a free permanent drop-off service. They are Blue Mountains City Council, Camden Council, Parkes Shire Council, City of Parramatta Council, City of Ryde Council and Wollondilly Shire Council.”

The community recycling centres are part of the NSW Government’s Waste Less, Recycle More initiative. The grants are administered by the Environmental Trust and funded through the waste levy.

To date, over 100 Community Recycling Centres have been funded in NSW and 92 are currently in operation. More than 7.5 million kilograms of household problem wastes have been collected since the program started. The materials most commonly dropped off are:

1. Paint (over 4 million kilograms)
2. Gas cylinders (over 1 million kilograms)
3. Batteries (over 247,000 kilograms kgs)
4. Fire extinguishers (nearly 200,000 kilograms)
5. Oil (over 190,000 kilograms)

A large proportion of these problem wastes are recycled. Paints are mixed with other waste solvents and used as an alternative to fuel in cement kilns and the metal containers are recycled. Used oils are processed to become a lubricant or used for waste to energy. Household batteries are sent to recyclers where the steel, copper and aluminium is recovered and returned to the manufacturing sector. Some of the material is used in the manufacture of cathodes for new batteries. Overall, around 95 per cent of the materials contained in a battery are recovered.

More information about Community Recycling Centres what can and can’t be accepted, and where other items can be taken, is available at https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/your-environment/recycling-and-reuse/household-recycling-overview/community-recycling-centres

Source: NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment

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