Recent reports of pressures impacting the recycling industry

News | 9 February 2018


Despite recent reports of pressures impacting the recycling industry, Council can advise that, at present, this is not impacting operations in our municipality and residents are asked to continue recycling as normal.

What is the issue?

China’s recent change in policy has imposed restrictions on the importation of unsorted, dirty or contaminated plastics and mixed paper and cardboard. The policy most directly impacts kerbside recycling services, as recyclables from households are usually on-sold in a mixed form.

While much of Australia’s recyclable material is processed in Australia, significant quantities are exported to China for processing.

We are now seeing the industry directly respond, with one recycling processor refusing to accept recyclable material from a regional collection contractor. Importantly for Stonnington, this is not impacting metropolitan councils at this point.

The Victorian Government is working with local government and industry to respond to the issues posed by the China restrictions on recycling as a matter of urgency. The State response is being led by the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, and the Minister for Local Government, Municipal Association of Victoria and Local Government Victoria are providing advice on the issue and response options through a State Working Group.

See our Waste and Recycling Collections page for more information.