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More waste is re-used and recycled to support the development of a circular economy

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Objective 35

Greater Sydney faces challenges providing and managing waste services as the population grows. The provision of waste management is an essential service to communities. Existing waste management facilities do not have the capacity to accommodate projected growth. Councils working with private sector contractors manage much of Greater Sydney's waste collection and processing. Many contractors rely on waste facilities outside the local area due to limited waste infrastructure in Greater Sydney.

Approaches for reducing the environmental impacts of waste are set out in the NSW Waste and Resource Recovery Strategy 2014-21. The strategy highlights the importance of diverting waste from landfill by avoiding waste generation and increasing recycling. The strategy sets targets for reducing litter, reducing illegal waste dumping and managing problem waste, such as paint, gas bottles and household batteries.

Existing waste management facilities need to be protected from residential encroachment and at the same time address ongoing environmental issues such as odour, noise, truck movements and dust. As set out in Objective 23, industrial and urban services land provides important locations for waste management facilities and the recycling of municipal, commercial and industrial waste and hazardous materials within each District.

Figure 56: Circular economy

Download this image s3fs-public/gsrp_figure_56.png (format PNG / 225 KB )

There is diminishing capacity in existing landfill sites in Greater Sydney, with more waste being sent to landfill outside the region. This increases costs to the community. Additional sites for resource recovery within Greater Sydney would reduce waste going to landfill and the associated transport costs. Identifying suitable sites is challenging due to the potential impacts of odour, truck movements and noise. Therefore, retaining industrial land locally for waste management and recycling is critical. Support is required for councils and the private sector to identify and develop additional sites to deliver more efficient waste management for Greater Sydney.

Land use plans need to address opportunities to develop recycling and waste management facilities.

Photograph of a City of Sydney worker sorting e-waste from landfill.

E-waste diverts waste from landfill (City of Sydney).

Strategy 35.1

Protect existing, and identify new, locations for waste recycling and management.

Strategy 35.2

Support innovative solutions to reduce the volume of waste and reduce waste transport requirements.