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NSW dedicates A$ 47 million to ’emergency’ recycling package

Australia – Some A$ 47 million (US$ 36 million) has been set aside by authorities in the Australian state of New South Wales (NSW) to help local councils and waste management players reduce the impact of China’s ban on ‘low-grade’ imported recyclables.

NSW’s environment minister Gabrielle Upton has announced the availability of the financial support so the region’s councils can offset the costs of kerbside recycling.

The ‘emergency package’ is also designed to improve tendering processes and fund community education to reduce contamination of recycled materials put in ‘yellow-lid’ bins.

For decades, China has been a major destination for recycled materials exported from Australia, taking more than a third of its post-consumer plastics as well as a large quantity of recovered paper and scrap metal.

A significant proportion of this material originates from NSW’s 7.5 million-plus residents who generate some 3.69 million tonnes of household waste per year (9.4 kg per person per week), of which 1.77 million tonnes is recycled to give a recycling rate of around 48%.

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