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Australia invests 20 million in future-proofing recycling tech

Australia’s Federal Industry Minister Karen Andrews has announced that a fund of AU$ 20 million will be made available to the country’s recyclers. The investment is meant to support businesses developing cutting-edge recycling technologies and smart solutions.  

The multi-million funding will also create lots of new jobs while diverting material from landfill and curbing overseas waste exports. The investment is particularly hoped to boost the plastics recycling rate, which currently stands at only 12%.

The money will be made available through the federal government’s Co-op­erative Research Centres Projects grants. These grants are worth up to AU$ 3 million and the benefiting tech businesses must be able to match the funding.

‘This funding will strengthen Australia’s recycling industry and help us achieve higher recycling rates,’ Andrews comments. ‘Boosting our onshore plastic recycling industry has the potential to create over three times as many jobs as exporting our plastic waste, ensuring a more sustainable and prosperous future. This funding will reduce the nation’s dependence on landfills, reduce the impact of plastics on our en­vironment, and support Australian businesses and ­researchers to develop new ­markets and design products for recycled plastics.’

Meanwhile, Premier Daniel Andrews has revealed there is­ a AU$ 6.6 million financial aid package to assist 33 affected councils left with waste because of the ‘collapse’ of Victoria-based waste exporter SKM Recycling. State officials will also provide AU$ 4.7 million to help improve the quality of 100 000 tonnes of recycled ­material.

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