Australia’s biggest recycling plant gets $16.5M funding boost
Australia’s biggest polyethylene terephthalate (PET) recycling plant continues its construction as the Government increases its funding to ensure that it can meet the country’s ambitious waste reduction targets and support job creation in the region.
Circular Plastic Australia’s PET recycling facility is receiving an added $16.5 million through a Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) investment, making it the first investment under the Australian Recycling Investment Fund.
The recycling facility is expected to recycle up to one billion plastic bottles each year, turning them into more than 20,000 tonnes of new PET bottles and food packaging. The plant will be partially powered by solar energy to reduce its carbon footprint.
Construction began in February, delivering an important economic boost in the region through its 300 direct and indirect jobs. 35 ongoing roles will also support the facility’s ongoing operations.
The Government is currently focused on growing and strengthening Australia’s waste and recycling industry, with the project helping in the delivery of a cleaner and greener country for future generations.
“Through the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, the Government is investing in this important sector and working with industry to attract additional investment,” Minister for Finance Simon Birmingham said.
“Improving Australia’s recycling capacity is good for the environment and Australia’s economic growth. As we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, boosting jobs within the sector will help secure Australia’s future and this project is assisting that.”
Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said that better waste management was important to Australia’s goal of a low-emission economy. He believes that the recycling facility has the potential to reduce emissions by cutting landfill volumes.
“That’s why we’re partnering with industry and backing projects that will increase our recycling rates, turn our waste back into valuable products and encourage innovation so that resources are not lost to landfill,” Minister Taylor said.
Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management Trevor Evans said the reforms being made to the recycling industry are making the country more self-sufficient and self-reliant.
“These reforms are supporting our own local manufacturers and ensuring we have a strong domestic supply chain for recycled products to create a more circular economy,” Assistant Minister Evans said.
The Australian Recycling Investment Fund was announced in the 2019-20 Budget and is a key part of the $167 million plan to boost Australia’s recycling rates, tackle plastic waste and halve food waste by 2030.
The Government is also supporting recycling and clean energy projects under the $1.3 billion Modern Manufacturing Initiative.