Tuesday 20 June 2017

Bi-partisan support for waste reduction and recycling

A Waste Reduction and Recycling Bill has been introduced by Labor to the State Parliament and includes a cash for containers scheme as well as a ban on single use plastic bags. The legislation is very similar to the policies announced by the LNP some 12 months ago and is great news for the environment said State Member for Noosa, Glen Elmes.

“It is pleasing to see that both major parties agree when it comes to reducing waste and protecting the environment.

“Queenslanders use around one billion plastic bags every year and the average family collects more than 60 per week. Single-use plastic bags have an average lifespan of just 12 minutes and can take more than 1000 years to fully decompose causing irreversible damage to both land and waterway environments.

“There are plenty of alternatives to the single-use plastic bag – by making a simple lifestyle change, local families can make a huge difference.

The LNP also committed to introduce a container deposit scheme that would give consumers, businesses and charities a 10 cent refund for aluminium, glass and plastic drink containers returned for recycling.

Mr Elmes said it is estimated that Queensland community groups could claim over $25 million from deposits and handling fees, and create hundreds of new jobs across the state in the recycling sector under the LNP policy.

I celebrate the fact that two major parties in Queensland can initiate good practice which benefits the environment and creates jobs. Whilst the legislation is yet to be rigorously assessed by the parliamentary Committee and debated in Parliament it appears to have the markings of good policy, and depending on when the election is called, could be passed before the end of the year.