WMAA, ACOR call for inaugural Australian Circular Economy & Recycling Action Plan

4 April 2018

The Waste Management Association of Australia (WMAA) and the Australian Council of Recycling (ACOR) have come together for the betterment of the entire waste and resource recovery industry to call on all Ministers, ahead of the Ministerial Council this month, to work with industry in the development, and urgent implementation of the inaugural Australian Circular Economy & Recylcing Action Plan.

“It is absolutely the case that the industry’s future direction is at an important crossroads, with an opportunity to grow more Australian-based manufacturing jobs, and actively build on the 20 years’ worth of environmental gains in Australia, however a concerted effort at this critical point in time is required by all,” said Ms Gayle Sloan, WMAA CEO.

The Action Plan is needed to build on respective State Governments’ shorter-term actions to date to maintain the community’s confidence in recycling services under the current unprecedented circumstances brought about by China’s National Sword legislation.

WMAA and ACOR are advocating to the Federal Environment and Energy Minister, Josh Frydenberg MP, and his State colleagues to work with industry to pivot toward this new strategic direction to decouple the Australian recycling and resource recovery industry from global markets.

“A $150 million national Action Plan would enable the 'three I's' that are needed to re-boot recycling and kick-start the circular economy. Investment in infrastructure and new markets; improvement of recyclate material quality and recycling contracts, and; innovation in positive purchasing of recycled content products by governments. We need the Meeting of Environment Ministers in later April to decisively act with leadership,” said Mr Peter Shmigel, ACOR CEO. “It is time to transform the recycling and resource recovery industry so it can help transform our economy to a more competitive, sustainable and circular model that makes the best use of as many resources, including human resources as possible in Australia.”

WMAA and ACOR have developed a list of priority actions that are required to address this issue in the short term, and in the longer term to achieve the structural changes required.

“WMAA and ACOR have a united industry position on this important topic, and are committed to working with government to ensure the success of the Australian Circular Economy & Recycling Action Plan,” said Ms Sloan.