The Sunshine Coast is on the verge of unveiling a state-of-the-art Material Recycling Facility (MRF) at a cost of A$40.5 million. Expected to commence operations by the year-end, the facility is equipped to process more than 60 thousand metric tons of recyclables annually, including aluminium cans, glass bottles, plastic containers, cardboard, paper, and steel.
The MRF’s innovative intelligent sorting technology combined with expanded recycling capabilities promises to significantly boost recycling outcomes while reducing waste-to-landfill. This landmark initiative holds the potential to open up new opportunities within the circular economy, paving the way for downstream market innovations.
During a recent Ministerial Environmental Round Table event on the Sunshine Coast, Environment Minister Leanne Linard, alongside local officials including Member for Nicklin Rob Skelton, Mayor Mark Jamieson, and Environment & Liveability Portfolio Councillor Maria Suarez, toured the new facility.
This MRF marks a significant milestone as South East Queensland’s first new-build recycling plant and represents the largest investment in publicly-owned recycling infrastructure in the past ten years. The project is the result of a collaborative funding arrangement among various government levels, including a A$22 million contribution from the Palaszczuk Government’s Recycling and Jobs Fund, A$13.5 million from the Sunshine Coast Council, and $5 million from the Albanese Government’s Recycling Modernisation Fund.
Minister for the Environment and Water Tanya Plibersek MP emphasized the importance of such initiatives in comments to local media.
“Our funding is supporting new recycling infrastructure as well as helping regional communities in Queensland recycle more of their waste. We want to better protect nature and reverse decline for our kids and grandkids – and that takes all levels of Government working together.”
The facility’s advanced capabilities extend to achieving exceptional recycling purity levels, with an impressive 98% purity for sorted materials, including aluminium cans. Member for Nicklin, Rob Skelton, lauded the collaboration.
“The facility will sort glass bottles and jars, paper, cardboard, plastics, steel cans, and aluminium cans from household and business yellow-lidded bins at 98 per cent purity – the highest quality of any Australian recycling facility.”
As the Sunshine Coast prepares to inaugurate this cutting-edge MRF, it’s a significant stride toward bolstering recycling endeavors, aligning with both local and national environmental goals.