Regional councils join the recycling revolution

Wednesday, 09 November 2016

Four councils will re-launch Lismore City Council's recycling education campaign this week as they embrace the city's innovative waste management approach and join the recycling revolution.

Ballina, Byron, Richmond Valley and Tenterfield councils are now sending recycling to Lismore for processing through the $3.65 million Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) – a specialised plant that sorts, separates and prepares 20,000 tonnes of recyclables annually for remanufacture into new products.

The education campaign – The Dirty Dozen: 12 Recycling Rules for Your Yellow Bin – will help residents to change their recycling habits and ensure the whole region is recycling the right stuff in the right bins.

“The MRF is only as good as the people who recycle at home – if items end up in the waste bin instead of the recycling bin then they go straight to landfill,” Lismore City Council Waste Education Officer Danielle Hanigan said.

“The Dirty Dozen is a set of simple, clear, colourful rules that demonstrate how to recycle right at home. Our region is becoming known as a leader in recycling and we need every household on board if we are to become the recycling capital of Australia.”

The state-of-the-art MRF enables residents to recycle soft plastics by bagging them in plastic bags and placing them in recycling bins – an innovative technique pioneered by Lismore City Council.

“Our soft plastics recycling means that single use plastic bags no longer go to landfill,” Danielle said.

“We can now crush and bale them to sell and be made into new products. It's not just plastic bags either – any soft plastic packaging can now be recycled by bagging it up first. Given the amount of soft plastic packaging on supermarket shelves, this is a huge step in the right direction for our environment.”

Other key elements of the Dirty Dozen include crushing old glass into sand, melting polystyrene for use in new products and the introduction of Resource Recovery Collection Satchels. The satchels allow people to collect and recycle traditional problem wastes including household batteries, reading glasses, corks, CDs and DVDs, mobile phones and accessories, smoke alarms, small electronics and printer cartridges.

Northern Rivers residents intrigued by how the MRF works can see it up close and personal during Northern Rivers Waste's 15th birthday Community Open Day on Saturday, 19 November.

Northern Rivers Waste is the waste operations arm of Lismore City Council and the open day will includes lots to learn, see and do for all ages. There are tours of the MRF and organics processing pad as well as family friendly activities including a wheelie bin lifting competition, Recycled Market and Old Wares Sale, recycled craft and composting activities for kids, free face painting, food and coffee, prizes and giveaways, and a recycled sculpture display.

The Community Open Day is on Saturday, 19 November from 9am to 2pm at 313 Wyrallah Road, East Lismore. All activities are free and everyone is welcome.

For more recycling information, download The Dirty Dozen or read our comprehensive Lismore Recycling Guide. You can also find lots more information and tools including an A-Z listing of what items go in what bin on the Northern Rivers Waste website.

News Updates