I have been pleasantly surprised to find out that the global crack-down on accepting waste from other countries is providing South Gippsland with economic opportunities.

Now that we have to deal with our own waste, both federal and state governments are setting ambitious waste reduction targets and Recycling Victoria (a part of DELWP) has $300 million to transform the recycling sector. They are committed to working with local councils to create cutting-edge local industries and support local jobs in this sector.

Of course, they are not just giving the money away, councils have to apply for funding for specific projects. Our council is not very big compared to those in metropolitan Melbourne and just doesn’t have the population base to sustain big new industrial developments… the good news is that we are partnering with the other Gippsland shires to access the funding, provide jobs and minimise our waste. The Kerbside Organics Processing Tender has recently closed and others are in the pipeline.

This is a great example of Gippsland councils collaborating – hopefully we will see fruitful collaboration in many other areas under our new council.

Anda Banikos, candidate for Coastal Promontory Ward, Fish Creek.