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The size of the country is most certainly one of the reasons why Australia did not need to focus so much on finding alternatives to landfilling in the past. Theoretically, the wide expanse of undeveloped land meant there was plenty of space available. Climate change, however, is also impacting on Australia forcing the country to look for more sustainable business practices.
This July, Lake Macquarie City Council and REMONDIS took a significant step towards creating a more environmentally friendly future for the region when they opened their state-of-the-art organics resource recovery facility in Lake Macquarie City, New South Wales. A total of 44,000 tonnes of organic waste – such as food waste and garden waste – can now be processed into compost and soil amendment products every year. CEO Luke Agati believes the seven-figure sum has been well invested: “We are helping to promote Australia’s strategy to recover valuable resources and see a great opportunity here to grow the company in the region.”
The people living in Hunter are among the first to have access to such an innovative recycling service.
This new facility has enabled REMONDIS to expand its previous operations in this region: the company has already composted more than 100,000 tonnes of garden waste since 2013, diverting this waste stream away from landfill and saving over 13 million dollars of landfill costs. Looking at sustainability, however, the most important fact here is that this cutting-edge facility not only prevents organic waste from being sent to landfill but is also able to make the very most of this material.
Luke Agati, CEO of REMONDIS Australia
“REMONDIS applauds forward-thinking local government organisations such as Lake Macquarie City Council for their dedication to building the vital recycling infrastructure that will create job opportunities and strengthen the Australian economy,” Luke Agati continued. The facility is a milestone in the efforts being made to reduce the region’s environmental footprint and is one of the council’s biggest projects. It is the centrepiece of the council’s new 3-bin waste management system that stipulates that organic waste must be collected separately to significantly increase the volumes being recycled. Australians are still relatively unaware of both the economic and environmental importance of conserving natural resources. To encourage more people to recycle their food and garden waste, the council has set up a convenient automatic, cashless weighbridge system that will give users access to the facility with the swipe of a card, enabling fast and accurate transactions. “We want to make local inhabitants more aware of this subject and let them know about the advantages of composting food waste,” Luke Agati concluded.
Click here to see a fast motion film of the facility being built in Lake Macquarie City
The project also received a 1.4 million dollar grant from the EPA Waste Less Recycle More initiative, Australia’s largest pro-gramme promoting recycling across the country. 135 guests attended the opening ceremony, including many prominent business people, the German and Austrian Consuls General and two members of the Parliament of New South Wales.
Norbert Rethmann, Honorary Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the RETHMANN Group, Heinrich Zölzer, a former member of the Supervisory Board of the RETHMANN Group, and Gunther Neumann, Manager of the Lake Macquarie Branch, welcomed in the new era of composting in Australia
Gunter Neumann, manager of the Lake Macquarie branch and the new organics resource recovery facility, was recently presented with the Lake Macquarie Business Excellence Award in the category “Young Business Executive of the Year 2018” in recognition of his outstanding efforts to position Lake Macquarie as one of the country’s leaders in environmental protection.