Tweed Shire Council has taken another step towards their long term ‘zero waste’ commitment with work commencing on the new $7 million organic processing facility.
Capable of dealing with nearly 21,000 tonnes of food and garden organics (FOGO) annually, the facility it will be linked in with the Council’s green bin kerbside collection program.
‘The introduction of the green organic bins has reduced household waste to landfill by approximately 20 per cent and this modern facility will play a key role in Council waste management plans for the next 50 years’ said Mayor of Tweed Councillor Katie Milne.
The Tweed organics recycling facility will function as an enclosed composting facility which will also be environmentally sustainable with features such as a 99KW solar power system expected to offset 22 per cent of the facility’s power consumption. Rainwater will be captured for processing operations and all wastewater generated in the processing of organics will be reused in the composting process.
‘This will be a win for the environment, not just by reducing the amount of green waste going to landfill but also turning it into a high quality compost product available locally for households, farmers, businesses, developers and for Council use in our parks,’ said Councillor Milne.
Residents ready to engage
‘It will also help to reduce Council transport and logistics costs, streamline our services and create employment at a time when job creation and innovation is vital for the Tweed.’
The facility will be constructed and operated by NSW organics recycling business Soilco Pty Ltd at the Stotts Creek Resource Recovery Centre. It will be the largest organic processing plant on the Northern Rivers.
‘Since Council’s FOGO collections began, the reduction in organic waste to landfill shows that residents are actively embracing the process,’ Soilco general manager Charlie Emery said.
‘We are also looking to work with local businesses and food producers, such as hotels and resorts in the area to help them better manage their green waste.
‘Once the facility is up and running, Council will be able to process its own food and green waste, right next to the existing recycling and landfill centre.’
The facility, due to be operational by September 2021, will be run by Soilco for 10 years with an additional five year option for Council to extend.
The project is supported by the NSW Environmental Trust as part of the NSW EPA’s Waste Less, Recycle More initiative, funded from the waste levy. The initiative provides funding support to councils and other organisations to build facilities to increase the amount of organic waste diverted from landfill in NSW.