Media Release: Save Our Recycling campaign welcomes decisive steps to address crisis from Labor and Greens

9 March 2019

The state-wide Save Our Recycling campaign has welcomed NSW Labor’s pledge today to reinvest revenue collected from the Waste Levy into recycling facilities, a circular economy fund and support for the local government sector in NSW.

NSW Labor unveiled its waste policy this morning, pledging to split new funding from the Waste Levy revenue between environmental programs and a $140 million Circular Economy and Jobs Investment Fund that will invest in NSW’s onshore recycling capacity.

The Labor announcement comes after an earlier decisive announcement from the NSW Greens at the Save Our Recycling Election Summit on Wednesday to reinvest 100 percent of the Waste Levy into recycling and waste.

The Save Our Recycling campaign, run by Local Government NSW, has been calling for 100% of the Waste Levy to be re-invested into sustainable waste management initiatives in NSW.

“Now it’s time for the Liberal government to come to the table and explain what they are going to do about the recycling crisis and the waste levy if elected,” said Linda Scott, President of Local Government NSW.

Ms Scott welcomed Labor’s announcement as a “decisive step towards creating a circular economy, where everything we put in our recycling bins is repurposed and reused for as long as possible to create a more sustainable future.”

“In particular, we welcome Labor’s proposed Circular Economy Job Creation Investment Fund, which will allocate $140 million in funding towards local recycling facilities, supporting the growth of the recycling industry in regional and rural areas, innovation and increasing community-based waste reduction initiatives.

“Labor’s new policy takes a collaborative approach to tacking the recycling crisis and we welcome the proposed Recycling, Resource Recovery and Waste Council which will enable local governments to provide advice to the Minister for the Environment.

“Local governments have been sorely lacking state support for waste management facilities and programs. We have advocated for a collaborative approach between local and state government, and the recent announcements from Labor and the Greens are a decisive step in the right direction,” Cr Scott said.

“Recycling and repurposing waste offers a golden opportunity not only to reduce landfill, but to create jobs and revenue here in NSW. We are already seeing councils, businesses and individuals all across NSW find innovative, creative and cost-effective ways to reuse their waste for the public good.

“Our state’s limited onshore recycling capacity has seen an increase in our recyclable material go into landfill. We know that residents across NSW are dedicated recyclers eager to do their bit for the environment and we cannot let their efforts go to waste.

“Now that Labor and the Greens have both announced comprehensive waste management policies, all eyes are on the Premier Berejiklian and Deputy Premier Barilaro to follow suit.

“The Save Our Recycling campaign will be out in full force between now and the election and we won’t be letting the Liberal government get away without taking new action to address the recycling crisis at hand.

“The waste crisis affects us all, and urgent new action is needed from all parties to work towards a sustainable future for NSW.”

Hannah Craft: 0423 377 965