IT IS out with the old and in with the new in Bass Coast.
It’s the last week Bass Coast residents will be using the two-bin system, as the rest of the new bins are delivered and the new system starts Monday, September 4.
The new bins have been hotly debated between ratepayers and council, many raising concerns over the potential stench of the landfill bin and the extra $47 charge to introduce the system.
Residents have asked council why they’re replacing all of the old bins, even though many of them are in good condition.
The new bins will have barcodes in case they are stolen or to find which households aren’t sorting out waste and recycling properly.
For two weeks from September 4, council will begin collecting the old bins. They will also do a second run in January for anyone who missed out, specifically for holiday home owners.
For people who already compost, the organics bin will mean residents can put waste that doesn’t break down fast, such as bones and tissues, into the bin.
Council plans on saving thousands of dollars, potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars, in maintenance at Grantville tip and in landfill levies because of the new system.
A new hole at Grantville is costing $1.8 million and council pays the Environment Protection Authority around $800,000 a year in landfill levies.
But if the waste in the organics bin isn’t going to landfill, where is it going?
The organics waste will be processed at Gippsland Water’s more than 8500 hectare Dutson Downs waste treatment centre.
It’s a two hour and 20 minute drive from Wonthaggi but will see the waste turned into compost, bagged and sold.
The Bass Coast Shire Council has been running an extensive campaign in local media and online to alleviate concerns over the new bin system.
On YouTube, the council’s communications department has published three videos with Mayor Cr Pamela Rothfield on the new bin system and has hosted two Facebook Q and A sessions with councillors.
Here are a few of the popular questions on Facebook and snippets of the answers:
• Q. So what will happen to those weekenders that put their bins out three to four days, or now maybe two weeks, before pickup and usually with only a couple of plastic bags in them, and are then blown over. Why can’t you have “skips” placed near council offices? – Chris Walton.
A. This is the same situation we currently have with our recycling bins, as they’re only collected fortnightly. People can work with their friendly neighbours to bring them in for them, or if a bin only has a couple of bags in it, they don’t have to put them out for collection every fortnight. – Cr Bruce Kent
• Q. I note you say that there’ll be cameras on the trucks to record people getting it wrong. What happens when someone says it wasn’t their fault as a sneaky neighbour put it in the bin overnight? – Sue Macgregor.
A. The contamination program helps us identify repeat offenders and we’ll work with residents on an individual basis if they’re having any issues with neighbours using their bins. – Danielle Lisle, council’s waste education officer.
• Q. Can I purchase an extra bin? – Michelle Ann Brown.
A. You can organise a larger landfill bin (240L) at an additional cost of $132.50 per year. You could also arrange a secondary recycling bin at a cost of $76.15 per year, or a secondary organics bin at a cost of $78.00 per year. – Cr Bruce Kent.