What happens to your recycling in Australia?

How much recycling actually gets recycled in Australia?

In Australia, we recycle 55% of all the waste collected from households, businesses and construction and demolition. There are around 100 Material Recovery Facilities operating in Australia which separate out the different materials for recycling. If it all went to landfill, running these facilities would be pointless.

Does Australia actually recycle?

Australia caught unprepared

It threw the global waste and recycling trade into chaos. Australian companies redirected recyclable material to south-east Asia, but in 2019 more countries began turning back containers of recyclable rubbish, declaring they would not be dumping grounds.

Where does Australia’s waste go to?

Australia generated 75.8 million tonnes of solid waste in 2018-19, which was a 10% increase over the last two years (since 2016-17). Over half of all waste was sent for recycling (38.5 million tonnes), while 27% was sent to landfill for disposal (20.5 million tonnes).

Where does your recycling really end up?

They usually end up being incinerated, deposited in landfills or washed into the ocean. While incineration is sometimes used to produce energy, waste-to-energy plants have been associated with toxic emissions in the past.

Has China stopped taking Australia’s recycling?

But China has decided it no longer wants to be the world’s garbage dump, and this has left the rest of the world with a huge problem. … In Australia, we lack the infrastructure to do our own processing of recyclables and costs are high.

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Does my recycling actually get recycled?

This will likely come as no surprise to longtime readers, but according to National Geographic, an astonishing 91 percent of plastic doesn’t actually get recycled. This means that only around 9 percent is being recycled.

Why is waste a problem in Australia?

Australian consumers throw away around 3.1 million tonnes of food each year. Of this, 2.54 million tonnes of food waste was from our homes. When rotting food ends up in landfill it turns into methane, a greenhouse gas that is particularly damaging to the environment.

How is recycling separated?

A mechanical claw grabs a handful of material from the tipping floor and drops it into a spinning drum, which evenly distributes the recyclables onto a conveyor belt. Workers extract plastic bags, coat hangers, and other items that might jam up the line, as well as anything that won’t fit through the sorter.