$60 million in grants to transform plastics recycling

NSW businesses are being encouraged to apply for a grant under a new $60 million national program to transform plastic waste into valuable products.

The Australian Government’s Recycling Modernisation Fund (RMF) Plastics Technology stream will boost existing recycling infrastructure and uncover new methods of processing plastics that are difficult to recycle.

NSW businesses can apply for grants of between $1 million and $20 million per project.

There will be a focus on projects that take hard-to-recycle plastics, including soft plastics like shopping bags, bread bags and cling wrap, and recirculate them back into the economy in a safe and sustainable way.

Projects can include new infrastructure or improvements to existing machinery, equipment, technology and processes.

This program will help NSW drastically reduce its reliance on plastic and progress towards NSW’s target of tripling the recycling rate by 2030.

Further information on the program and application process can be found on the EPA website https://www.epa.nsw.gov.au/working-together/grants/infrastructure-fund/nsw-plastics-technology-recycling-modernisation-fund.

Quotes attributable to NSW Minister for the Environment, Penny Sharpe:

“NSW generates around 800,000 tonnes of plastic waste every year, but only 10 percent is currently recycled. This is significantly below recycling rates for all other types of waste.

“This funding aims to triple the plastic recycling rate by 2030.

“By recycling plastic, we’re not only limiting impacts on the environment, but we can also transform waste materials into valuable assets.

This Federal Government investment will support NSW to take another huge step forward towards the circular economy we’re striving for.”  

Quotes attributable to the Minister for the Environment and Water, the Hon Tanya Plibersek MP:

“Australians use about 3.8 million tonnes of plastic a year and dispose of about 2.7 million tonnes. That’s about 50 times the weight of the Sydney Harbour Bridge being thrown out each year.

“And we’re only recycling about 13 per cent of it.

“We can do better. That’s why we’re investing $60 million to boost Australia’s recycling and recovery rates for hard-to-recycle plastics.

“The funding will invest in exciting technologies that could help solve challenges in recycling plastic waste like soft plastics going into landfill.

“Labor is driving the transition to a circular economy by 2030. It’s good for the economy and great for the environment.”