The Weekly Advertiser Horsham

Councils share in glass project

- BY DYLAN DE JONG

Converting recycled glass into a roadbase material is among key projects Yarriambia­ck Shire Council is working on in an attempt to solving waste-management issues.

A $175,000 State Government grant will enable the council to invest in a mobile glass-crushing unit as part of its recycling and water management program and move to a circular economy.

Mayor Graeme Massey said the plan to use recycled glass would save the council money in building roads, while it also represente­d a shift towards a greener future.

“We will be able to save thousands of dollars in reusing the waste product, but the biggest benefit for using glass as a road-base material will be for the environmen­t,” he said.

“This will prevent all glass going to landfill and it will be transforme­d back into its original state as sand.”

Cr Massey said Buloke, Horsham Rural City, West Wimmera and Hindmarsh councils were partnering with Yarriambia­ck and would have access to the glass crusher.

“It will be shared between five councils in the Wimmera,” he said.

“The idea with the glass crusher is it will move around the different shires.”

Cr Massey said the council’s plans would help it prepare for changes to Victoria’s waste-management policies.

The State Government will introduce its container deposit scheme in 2023 to maximise the return of used drink cans, bottles and cartons for recycling, in a plan to significan­tly reduce Victoria’s litter.

People will be able to deposit containers either over the counter at shops or at reverse-vending machines at sites such as sporting clubs and charities and receive a refund for the disposal.

“We have to have our container deposit scheme sorted by the end of 2024, so our move to use the glass-crushing unit will help us meet some of our obligation­s under the State Government plans,” Cr Massey said.

The State Government also announced earlier this year 79 local government areas would need to introduce food and green organics and separate glass bins in addition to garbage and recycling by 2030.

Cr Massey said the project would also better position the council for when the state moved to a four-bin recycling system.

“We needed a separate glass bin, but with the small amount of waste our shire is producing that wasn’t going to be viable,” he said.

“The mobile glass-crushing unit will help significan­tly with the glass separation side of our obligation­s. We will still need to be looking at food and green organic options as well.”

The council’s recycled glass project is one of 50 across the state not-for-profit organisati­ons and councils are working on to address waste issues.

Energy, Environmen­t and Climate Change Minister Lily D’ambrosio said the projects would identify, develop or deliver solutions to tackle almost one-million tonnes of waste and create 72 new jobs.

“Victorians are passionate about recycling. Giving old objects a new life is good for the environmen­t, good for businesses and good for the economy,” she said.

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