Last week the Andrews Government was pulled kicking and screaming into releasing $13 million in a temporary measure to prop up the recycling industry.
No details, no communication, no vision.
The Andrews Government has known about this looming crisis in the recycling industry since July 2017 and still nothing was done until the absolute last minute inflicting the maximum pain and anxiety on our local contractors and council.
We the general public pay the landfill levy through the annual garbage charge added to our rates. To date over $550 million sits in the government coffers of Sustainability Victoria with more added every day and yet ratepayers will be forced to meet the increase in the cost of recycling from July 1 this year.
What Victorians need is not a Band-Aid solution. We need a long term sustainable plan to deal with our recycling. Dumping it on China is simply not the solution. Victoria generates the waste therefore we have a responsibility to deal with it.
Build regional sorting facilities. Invest in waste to energy infrastructure. There are models throughout the world that we can copy whilst we upskill our workforce and become world leaders in waste technology. We don’t need another government taskforce.
First we work on reducing our waste (banning plastic water bottles and bags would be a start) then let’s use our landfill levies to find a sustainable solution to our recycling. The government should be working with the waste industry. Either step up or move aside.
Brian Paynter MP, State Member for Bass.