Building the capacity of Tasmania's resource recovery sector to process or use waste materials is central to responding to the COAG export bans on certain types of unprocessed waste, and for addressing key challenges in the Tasmanian and broader Australian waste and resource recovery space.
Successful projects: Recycling Modernisation Fund (Plastics) Grants
The following Tasmanian businesses were selected from nine applications to the Recycling Modernisation Fund (Plastics) Grants program. The Australian Government, through its Recycling Modernisation Fund
, provided $5.5 million, which was matched by $5.5 million from the Tasmanian Government. Further matching funding (or better) is being provided by the project applicants, which will result in $20 million being invested into Tasmania’s plastics recycling and remanufacturing.
Timberlink Wood Plastic Composite decking manufacturing facility
Timberlink, which operates a state-of-the art plantation timber processing facility in northern Tasmania, has been offered a grant of $5.8 million to build a facility to manufacture Wood Plastic Composite (WPC) decking and other WPC products. This will be only the second plant of its type in Australia and will supply growing demand in the home upgrade market. This will see over 1,300 tonnes a year of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic recycled and mixed with wood waste from Timberlink’s mill to make the WPC products. The HDPE pellets will be produced by another Tasmanian company (Envorinex) using containers, such as milk bottles, collected in Tasmania. This is a great example of increasing the value of a recycled product made in Tasmania to be used by another Tasmanian business.
Envorinex multi-material recycling facility
Envorinex, a Tasmanian company, has been offered $2.1 million to improve their existing Bell Bay and George Town facilities to reprocess waste plastic (high density polyethylene (HDPE), polypropylene (PP), and polyvinyl chloride (PVC)). This will result in 6,400 tonnes of pelletised plastic and/or remanufactured products being created each year in Tasmania. Projects include the collection and recycling of PP sterilisation wrap and curtains in partnership with GreenMed to create injection moulded products for use in hospitals. The company will also establish new waste recovery programs in partnership with Tasmanian milk companies, motels, restaurants, coffee shops, schools and beauty salons to recover HDPE containers to be pelletised for use in the Timberlink WPC product. Other products will include manufacturing a recyclable transport framing/protection system for pipes to be made from recycled PVC in partnership with Earth-Eco and the recovery and pelletising of waste flowerpots made from PP. Many of these products can again be recycled when at the end of their functional life.
Mitchell Plastic Welding Integrated mixed plastic recycling and manufacturing facility
Mitchell Plastic Welding, a Tasmanian company, has been offered just over $3 million to develop a waste plastics processing and manufacturing plant. At full capacity, this will be capable of processing 7,200 tonnes of plastic per annum into injection moulded products. Initially, waste plastic from the aquaculture sector will be remanufactured back into components for aquaculture cages. As the capacity is ramped up over subsequent years, a range of waste plastics would be collected, reprocessed, and made into products for the agriculture and construction industries.
Note: The figures on plastic processing and remanufacturing provided above are for the facilities when at maximum production, which will take several years to be achieved.