Working together on waste outcomes

Article image - Working together on waste outcomes

Problematic waste streams, illegal dumping and food organic trials were on the agenda at the South Australian Local Government Association’s Zero Waste Forum in July.

Attended by more than 150 people from Local Government, industry and State Government agencies the forum re-emphasised the need for councils and State Government agencies to work together to achieve the best outcomes.

Local Government Association Executive Director Wendy Campana said waste management is one of the most important council services to communities and that changes in waste management are providing even greater challenges across all sectors involved.

“Through the forum, we have looked at managing the relatively new phenomenon of e-waste, and particularly with the national changeover to digital television broadcast, we are envisaging a massive task with the collection and disposal of old and unwanted television sets over the next few years,” she said.

“A recent joint collection of e-waste and harmful waste in Holdfast Bay, Marion and West Torrens resulted in the collection of 30 tonnes of waste, including old and unwanted televisions, computers and stereos.

“It is important that this type of waste is not filtered through to landfill.

“South Australians are probably the best recyclers in Australia, but as with everything, there is room for improvement.”

Wendy Campana said the Forum also addressed the issues of upgrading regional waste infrastructure, mapping illegal dumping and the management of waste in medium to high rise developments.

“Illegal dumping is a great waste of resources, particularly in rural and regional communities,” she said.

“Councils spend more than $110 million per year, or 10 per cent of their annual spend on waste management and it is disappointing that some of these funds have to be diverted to pick up after people who do the wrong thing.”