RECYCLING from both the City of Greater Geelong and the Surf Coast Shire will be dumped in landfill following SKM Recycling stopping its processing of recyclables, and both councils are urging people to play their part in helping out.
On Thursday, the Environment Protection Authority Victoria issued SKM with a notice that required the company to stop accepting combustible recyclable waste at its Coolaroo site until its stockpiles complied with the Victorian Waste Management Policy.
The following day, the Surf Coast Shire and the City of Greater Geelong announced that any recyclable material they collected would be going to landfill in the short term, and people should only put out their yellow bins if they were full.
Both councils are working on solutions in the meantime.
Shire general manager of governance and infrastructure Anne Howard said regular collections of yellow lid recycling bins would continue in the shire for now, but recyclables going to the Anglesea landfill was “very disappointing and our last resort”.
“Council has been actively discussing response plans in the event that SKM might not be able to continue accepting our material, but at this time taking recyclables to landfill is unavoidable.
“We still need people to keep separating their recyclables into the right kerbside bins in case SKM returns to operation or an alternative is found.”
Collection of green organics and landfill bins in the shire will remain unchanged, and Anglesea’s food organics collection also remains unaffected.
City of Greater Geelong chief executive officer Martin Cutter said the city’s Resource Recovery Centres in Drysdale and North Geelong would continue to accept domestic quantities of separated paper, glass and metals.
“We have been aware of issues in our recycling system and have identified potential solutions at a local level.
“We are investigating the costs and impacts of a number of realistic short and medium-term solutions and will be implementing these as quickly as possible.
“This includes options for community recycling hubs, on-call recycling collection services, and converting yellow lid bins to paper and cardboard collection only. Paper and cardboard makes up 40 per cent of recyclable materials collected, and is a sellable product when separated from other materials.”