From 1 December businesses will pay from $35 per tonne extra when depositing landfill waste at council facilities and anyone with a commercial general waste bin service will notice the extra charge in their rates notice. Recycling does not attract the levy.
This State Government levy will be implemented by local governments across Queensland and is an action from the State Government’s Waste Reduction and Recycling Strategy 2010–2020.
Sunshine Coast Council’s Environment Portfolio Councillor Keryn Jones said there are benefits for businesses who rethink their waste.
“This levy rewards the recycler and penalises the polluter, which is the only way we’ll get the big changes we need to increase our recycling rates,” Cr Jones said.
“Our region produces a phenomenal amount of needless waste and so much of that waste is recyclable or could have been reduced, reused or avoided in the first place.
“My simple message to Sunshine Coast businesses is, you can avoid paying this levy, but you must rethink your waste and review your recycling practices – do it well and you’ll reap the rewards with financial incentives available.
“Council is already working with Sunshine Coast businesses to reduce their waste, water and energy through the ecoBiz program. There are some great resources available and it’s a great place to start gathering info and advice.
“What concerns me is that many businesses still don’t seem to know about the levy. So I’d advise those who aren’t familiar with the Queensland State Government waste reforms to visit the Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) website for further information before 1 December.”
There are some great incentives available for businesses that change the way they handle their waste including:
- assistance with an on-site visual waste assessment and recommendations for improvement
- $750 rebates to introduce new resource recovery services
- rebates to help with better separation and collection of recycling materials, and to expand internal business recycling separation programs
The aim of the levy is to help reduce waste generation in the first place, encourage more recycling and resource recovery, drive new market opportunities for waste recovery companies and help business identify more efficient production processes.
The levy will fund new programs and initiatives to help businesses implement new waste management and recovery practices.