The Palaszczuk Government is one step closer to stopping New South Wales trucks from dumping waste in Queensland and investing in new waste recovery industries, following the introduction of new legislation into Parliament today.
Environment Minister Leeanne Enoch said the Waste Reduction and Recycling (Waste Levy) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 would stop the trucks, see less waste sent to landfill and encourage more recycling and jobs.
“Queensland used to have a waste levy, but the former LNP Government recklessly scrapped it in 2012,” Ms Enoch said.
“This left us as the only mainland state without a levy.
“Reintroducing the levy will allow the Government to invest in waste management and recycling and the jobs that come with it.”
The Palaszczuk Government is also ensuring Queenslanders will not have to pay more to put out their wheelie bin every week, with $32 million committed in this year’s Budget in advance payments to Queensland councils.
“We are providing advance payments to councils that covers 105% of the cost of their municipal waste,” Ms Enoch said.
“This means councils are being paid more than the cost of what they actually send to landfill every year.
“Councils will have no reason to increase rates because of the waste levy – we are giving them more than enough funding to cover this.
“In fact, councils could choose to use the extra funds to increase their waste management services.”
Household municipal solid waste includes wheelie bin waste, waste disposed of in public bins, and trips to the tip.
“Research indicates that for every 10,000 tonnes of waste that goes to landfill, less than three jobs are supported. But if that same waste was recycled, more than nine jobs would be supported,” Ms Enoch said.
Gayle Sloan, Chief Executive Officer, Waste Management Association of Australia (WMAA) said that WMAA sees this as a great opportunity to grow and develop the resource recovery sector in Queensland, creating jobs and investment in the state.
“This will bring Queensland back in line with the majority of Australian states, and it is a step towards creating a level playing field across the country that industry so desperately needs,” Ms Sloan said.
Rick Ralph, Chief Executive Officer, Waste Recycling Industry Association said industry and all levels of government have a critical role in delivering the objectives of Queensland’s new waste strategy.
“We are committed to realising council and the State Government’s future direction on waste, and to reshape Queensland to become Australia’s leading secondary resources and recycling state,” Mr Ralph said.
The levy will begin on 4 March 2019 at a rate of $70 per tonne for general waste.