A Daley Labor Government has declared war on waste announcing it will ban single-use plastic bags, phase out single-use plastic and invest an additional $140 million into local recycling initiatives that also generate local jobs.
The bold plan was announced today at Clovelly by NSW Labor Leader, Michael Daley, and Deputy Labor Leader, Penny Sharpe, and Labor’s candidate for Coogee, Marjorie O’Neill.
NSW is the second highest per capita waste producer in the world. Every person in NSW generates two tonnes of waste each year. The NSW waste system is in crisis with the ban on recycled products going to China, rapidly declining sites for landfill, a collapsing market for recycled material and a current state government that has failed to engage with key stakeholders to solve the problems.
A Daley Labor Government will tackle these issues head-on. Labor’s plan will:
- Ban single-use plastic bags and develop a long term single-use plastic phase out plan for NSW;
- Establish a Circular Economy and Job Creation Investment Fund to provide an additional $140 million over four years to support investment in recycling and resource recovery facilities in NSW and generate local jobs; and
- Establish a Recycling, Resource Recovery and Waste Council with all key stakeholders to provide advice to the Minister for the Environment, including moving NSW towards a truly circular economy where waste is avoided, reduced, reused and recycled.
Mr Daley said Labor’s plan will be good for the environment, good for the economy, and good for jobs.
“People cannot fathom why the Liberals and Nationals refuse to stop the carnage to wildlife brought about by single-use plastic bags. If elected, Labor will introduce legislation to ban the bag in our first 100 days of taking office,” Mr Daley said.
“It is a fact that recycling waste generates more jobs than sending waste to landfill, by a factor of four and half times. Labor’s war on waste will seize this opportunity and at the same time reduce waste and pollution. It’s a win-win.”
Labor’s new $140 million Circular Economy and Job Creation Investment Fund will supercharge support for the resource recovery and recycling industry and local government, such as investment in recycling facilities, material processing facilities, increasing community-based waste reduction and recycling, and providing seed funding for innovative solutions to dealing with waste.
It will be established by investing unallocated waste levy revenue and ensuring every dollar earned is spent on addressing waste and supporting recycling and environmental programs.
Deputy Labor Leader, Penny Sharpe, said: “Sending waste to landfill is an idea well past its use by date. It is time for NSW to invest in local recycling and resource recovery facilities and to drive our economy to ensure that waste is avoided, reduced and recycled.”
At today’s announcement, Labor also committed to separating the conflicting roles of the Chairperson and CEO of the NSW Environment Protection Authority. Labor will ask the Chief Scientist to examine and report on the energy from waste regulatory framework, including examining planning consent laws, health impacts, impacts on recycling, and emissions.