Recycling brings multiple benefits

Investment in a state of the art Material Recycling Facility (MRF) has paid off in numerous ways for Toowoomba City Council in Queensland. The $1.8 million facility together with a divided wheelie bin system has resulted in increased participation from residents, a lessening of pressure on landfill sites, more revenue for Council and fewer costs accruing from related services.

The new weekly collection system has seen a 94% increase in recovered recyclables. The reduction in waste has increased the lifespan of Council's landfill. Space now available can accommodate commercial landfill users who pay for this service. The MRF is currently functioning at approximately 30% capacity. While servicing not only Toowoomba residents, but 18,100 additional households in surrounding municipalities, there is ample capacity to accommodate future needs.

Processing waste locally rather than having to transport material 128 kilometres to Brisbane, has resulted in significant savings. Further cost savings come in the form of decreased road maintenance costs, as the system requires fewer heavy vehicles on the local roads. Only six vehicles are required, as against 12 previously.

A $35,000 grant provided by the Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage helped fund the new bin system and a public education campaign to promote its introduction. Overall, net revenue gains to Council are in the order of 30%. Design and construction of the facility and vehicles was 100% Australian.

For further information contact Brian Witherspoon, telephone (076) 316 861.