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The recycling crisis in Australia: easy solutions to a hard problem

Ian MacKenzie writes in The Conversation (19.4.18) that, after Ipswich City Council announced it has stopped recycling household waste due to rising costs, it's likely that other councils around Australia will follow suit.

'Ipswich residents have been told their recycling waste will now be dumped into landfill because it is too expensive for the local council to recycle.

'This is a result of Australia’s recycling industry crisis. China’s recent ban on imported solid waste means that most of our waste has been stockpiled domestically and is not being recycled.

'Last year alone we exported more than 600,000 tonnes of waste to China. Australia does not currently have the capacity to handle this volume.

'In Queensland, this could not be happening at a worse time, given that the state will soon launch its own container refund scheme in a bid to boost recycling rates.

'Unfortunately, the case of Ipswich Council is likely to be repeated around Australia. Many local councils will be feeling the strain and considering their options as they face their own recycling mess.'

 

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