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Infrastructure Victoria has published the final advice to government on recycling and resource recovery infrastructure in Victoria.

The advice includes 13 recommendations that were developed in consultation with government and stakeholders and focuses on six priority materials including plastics, paper and cardboard, glass, organics, tyres and e-waste.

Our 13 recommendations include;

  1. Improve infrastructure capacity and capability for recovering and reprocessing priority materials
  2. Increase the diversion of organic waste from landfills
  3. Provide clarity to the waste-to-energy sector and establish regulatory settings to achieve desired waste-to-energy outcomes
  4. Review funding mechanisms to increase infrastructure and capability
  5. Provide ongoing statewide and locally tailored behaviour change programs
  6. Reduce contamination in material streams
  7. Introduce waste minimisation initiatives
  8. Remove barriers and strengthen markets for priority materials
  9. Ensure that producers and consumers involved in making and using products share the responsibility for their fate
  10. Provide greater clarity of roles and responsibilities for Victorian Government bodies involved in recycling and resource recovery
  11. Improve the quality and use of data to support resource recovery
  12. Use targets to drive performance
  13. Strengthen the status of, and processes around, Victoria’s Recycling Infrastructure Plan

Research shows there is no single approach to achieve these outcomes and all levels of government, business and households need to work together if we are to realise the huge opportunity.

Infrastructure Victoria also released a package of supporting reports that were used to develop the final advice. These include focus group research, material flow analysis, economic policy framework, resource recovery mapping and an infrastructure gap analysis.

Read our final advice here.

About the evidence base

Infrastructure Victoria has examined the state of the waste sector, looked at what works across the country and around the world, undertaken technical analysis and consulted with local government, industry and the community.  As a result, we have identified opportunities for investment, new processes and community action to support Victoria’s recycling and resource recovery sector. These include:

  • developing a clear, overarching policy framework including recycling targets and waste-to-energy
  • examining incentives and price signals for business and industry to improve their recycling performance
  • supporting councils to implement consistent approaches to sorting and collection, helping to reduce contamination in household recycling collection
  • separating food and garden waste from other materials to get more out of our organic waste
  • better planning, locating and protecting waste management sites
  • working with the Commonwealth and other states to increase consistency and reduce packaging and single use plastics
  • increasing the use of recycled materials by eliminating barriers and updating government procurement guidelines.

More information on these options is available in our report Recycling and resource recovery infrastructure: Evidence base October 2019. Supporting this report is a range of technical work including the following:

  • Inter-jurisdictional analysis – an assessment of recycling and resource recovery practices, technologies and markets in other states and around the world
  • Sector mapping and market design – an analysis of the Victorian recycling and resource recovery market design
  • Materials flow analysis – an analysis of waste flows, material market values, value add opportunities and fates of materials in the Victorian waste and resource recovery sector
  • Infrastructure analysis – sets out the context for planning, funding, construction and operation of infrastructure under different policy and investment scenarios
  • Legislative and regulatory settings – an examination of the legislative and regulatory settings in place in the sector
  • Community research – analysis of community attitudes and perceptions on recycling and resource recovery.

Submissions

Submissions have now closed. Thank you to all those who made a submission.

About the advice

Infrastructure Victoria has been asked to provide advice to government on recycling and resource recovery infrastructure in Victoria. Specifically, the government is seeking advice on the infrastructure that would be required and the role for government in providing support to:

  • develop Victoria’s re-processing sector for recycled material, particularly those that currently rely heavily on overseas markets such as plastics
  • better enable the use of products containing recycled materials in a variety of Victoria industries, such as manufacturing, construction and agriculture
  • support a waste to energy sector that prioritises the extraction of recyclable material and recovers energy only from the residual waste (i.e. without diverting waste from reuse or recycling)
  • support high levels of resource for organics, particularly food organics.

Terms of reference provided by the Special Minister of State set out the scope of the advice in more detail.

Infrastructure Victoria’s advice to government is due in April 2020.

Timeline

April 2019

Victorian Government issues request for advice

May - September 2019

Stakeholder consultation, interjurisdictional scan, sector mapping, research and analysis

October 2019

Infrastructure Victoria submits interim report

October - December 2019

Stakeholder consultation, community engagement, analysis

April 2020

Infrastructure Victoria submits final advice and recommendations to government

Infrastructure Victoria Recycling and resource recovery infrastructure Evidence base report - October 2019
Advice on recycling and resource recovery infrastructure - April 2020
Recycling and resource recovery infrastructure analysis - Arup October 2019
Waste advice community research - Quantum Market Research July 2019
International and Australian comparisons - Alphabeta September 2019
Victorian Waste Flows - Blue Environment October 2019
Opportunities to improve investment in the Victorian waste economy - Centre for Market Design September 2019
Legislative and regulatory review - Infrastructure Victoria October 2019
Consultation summary - Infrastructure Victoria October 2019
Waste and resource recovery infrastructure gap analysis – April 2020
Waste and resource recovery infrastructure data and spatial analysis – February 2020
Victorian waste flows projections – December 2019
Recycling and resource recovery infrastructure - economic policy development framework – February 2020
Centre for market design – sector mapping and market design: phase 2 report – December 2019
Quantum Market Research – Kerbside Collection Deep Dive - November 2019
Terms of reference - Advice on Recycling and Resource Recovery Infrastructure
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