Victoria’s Recycling Overhaul (Get To Know The New Scheme)

The Victorian Government recently announced an overhaul on the state’s approach to recycling. With recycling giant SKM being wound down last year, over half of Victoria’s recycling was left unprocessed and ended up in landfills. The ramifications are still being felt today with approximately 45 tonnes of recycling being dumped into landfills daily. That being said, our environmental consultants are optimistic because the Andrews Government has announced a new approach to combat this waste threat we’re facing – and we’re going to be taking you through the basics of it in today’s blog.

What does the overhaul include?

The goal of the scheme is to reduce waste going to landfill by 80% within the next decade. It’s a two-pronged scheme that includes updating our bin-system as well introducing a container deposit scheme – which is similar to other states’ container deposit schemes, some of which have been in place for several years. The bin system will be given a fresh new look which will include four coloured bins for different types of waste products.

Four new bins

As of 2021, one million households across Victoria will receive four bins – each one designed to take a different type of waste product. This initiative will be supported and enforced by 46 councils across the state. The new bins will feature distinctively coloured lids and their purposes are as follows:

  • Purple – Any form of glass products.
  • Red – General household waste.
  • Yellow – Plastic, paper and metal.
  • Green – Food and garden organics.

So, whilst the yellow and green lid-bins are already existing bins that we use – the yellow one will become more concentrated on plastic, paper and metal products as opposed to all types of recyclables. Broken glass is one of the biggest contaminants in the recycling process so assigning it its own dedicated bin will help to isolate it and ensure that it’s disposed of properly.

The aim is to get these four bins into every Victorian household by 2030. 40 councils will be making the switch next year, however, as their recycling contracts will be coming to an end. This will encourage Victorians to be a lot more sustainable and make it easier for them to positively contribute to the waste crisis – as well as help the state government combat it.

The container deposit scheme

The second part of the Andrews Government’s $129 million recycling initiative is the container deposit scheme. This is something that Victorian’s have been talking about for a few years as we’re one of the last states to implement such a plan. The process is simple – any container such as a can or bottle can be exchanged for a 10c reward.

The exact process has not been revealed yet, but our environmental consultants believe it could be similar to a reverse vending machine – which is something that the Wyndham City Council put into effect last year for non-glass containers. The difference was, the rewards were prizes such as movie tickets instead of cash.

South Australia was the first state to introduce such a scheme back in 1977 – with other states following suit over the last two decades. Western Australia is in the process of implementing such a service that will come into effect this year whilst Tasmania is looking at a 2022 rollout.

Victoria, however, will have to wait till 2023 before this scheme comes into effect – two years after the four bins will start rolling out. The alleged delay is due to further consulting that is required with industry experts to establish the best way to proceed with the rollout as well as ensuring the scheme is airtight and feasible.

Looking for environmental consultants?

Whilst this new recycling scheme is sure to positively impact the environment and bring better change for our state – it is something that will take time to implement due to its large scale. In the meantime – why not get in touch with our environmental consultants to see what they can do for you.

Alpha Environmental provides a full suite of environmental services for whatever your needs may be. Our environmental consultants can carry out all three phases of environmental site assessments as well as perform more specialised tasks that may be more suited to your requirements, such as groundwater testing, asbestos and mould testing and remedying and soil testing.

If you’d like to get in touch with one of our environmental consultants to find out more about our services, then please give us a call on 1300 039 181. You can also contact us via the enquiry form found on our website.