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CEO Statement – Recycling situation

CEO Statement – Recycling situation

As a result of the temporary closure of the Echuca Materials Recovery Facility, Council will be sending all recyclables to Robinvale and Swan Hill landfills for a short period of time.

Council was advised on Friday afternoon that its contractor Veolia who operates the Echuca Materials Recovery Facility will be temporarily closing. This decision has left Council with no alternative but to temporarily dispose of recyclable materials to landfill.

Whilst regrettable, this decision is necessary to ensure Council continues to collect the recyclable materials as usual.

Council has been advised that the closure of the Echuca Materials Recovery Facility will be for a four week period and is in a direct response to Veolia’s inability to place its mixed paper and cardboard with Visy Recycling, as they have suspended receipt of these materials from all Veolia sites.

Visy Recycling advised this regrettable step is in response to an interruption to the supply of pulp brought about by the fires in Eastern Victoria and Southern New South Wales.

It is hoped that this interruption is short lived and Council will be able to return to normal recycling processes when business resumes in four weeks.

Council considered temporarily stockpiling recyclable materials but has decided against this, given logistical and fire safety concerns. Co-mingled recycling stored in stockpile is a significant fire risk and Victoria has seen a number of large stockpile fires in recent months. Given the dry Mallee environment and expected relatively short duration of the interruption, it has been decided to take the safest option and have recyclables placed into landfill for this period of time.

Interruptions to recycling arrangements have plagued Metropolitan areas for over a year now and the Mallee has been fortunate to escape it until now.

The Swan Hill community has embraced recycling for over two decades and our community has a strong record of responsible recycling. Council is working with its contractor and is committed to ensuring that normal recycling processes can resume as soon as possible.

We will continue to keep the community informed and work our way through this recycling interruption.

– John McLinden, CEO