Councils buy back their rubbish
In an Australian first, nine South Australian councils have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to prioritise buying products made from recycled materials.
This MOU is the beginning of a circular procurement pilot project, led by the Local Government Association of South Australia (LGASA) with the assistance of a $96,500 Green Industries South Australia grant.
The goal is to increase local demand for recycled materials, support the development of a circular economy, and ultimately reduce waste and recycling costs for councils.
The participating councils include Adelaide Hills Council, City of Burnside, City of Charles Sturt, Mount Barker District Council, Rural City of Murray Bridge, City of Norwood Payneham and St Peters, City of Onkaparinga, City of Port Adelaide Enfield, and City of Prospect.
Through the MOU, these councils have committed to prioritising the purchase of recycled-content products through the procurement process, and tracking and reporting on recycled-content purchasing by weight.
Most also adopted a rolling target for the purchase of recycled plastic products, working towards eventually buying back recycled materials equivalent to half the weight of plastics collected in their council area.
Examples of products made of recycled materials that can be purchased by councils include road and construction materials, street furniture, bollards, office stationery and compost.
The MOU was signed onsite at Advanced Plastic Recycling (APR) – a leading manufacturer and designer of recycled wood plastic composite products made from 100 percent post-consumer waste.
Products produced by APR include bollards, boardwalks, fencing, and street furniture.