Waste and Resource Recovery in the EMRC Region

Waste management in the EMRC region is a collective responsibility.  We all generate waste, at home, at work, in our recreational spaces and in most of our day-to-day activities. The region’s local governments and the EMRC have individual and shared responsibility for the collection and management of waste generated however, we as individuals need to take responsibility for our purchases as well as how we dispose of them.

Waste to landfill

The EMRC operates the Red Hill Waste Management Facility on behalf of the six member Councils. Red Hill is a licensed class IV site that accepts household and domestic waste (including hazardous waste), commercial waste, contaminated solid waste and asbestos. Table 1 outlines the volume of waste landfilled from each source during the 2018 / 2019 financial year.

Waste Source

Total landfilled in 2018/2019 (kg)

Member Council Waste

128,211.34

Transfer Station

4916.08

Class III Contaminated

3080.95

Class IV Contaminated

191.45

Commercial Waste

74653.78

Asbestos

2297.55

Total (Kg)

215,421.65

Recycling Rates

Recycling rates are steadily improving. More people are making the effort to separate their recyclables in the home. Table 2 below shows the household recycling and contamination data for the 2018/2019 financial year. 

MGB Recycling

Total Collected

Total Recycled 2018/19

Total Contamination / Rubbish
2018/19

Bassendean

 1,203.19

 1,008.15

 195.04

Bayswater

 5,797.64

 4,955.76

 841.88

Belmont

 3,506.51

 3,013.09

 493.42

Kalamunda

 5,061.89

 4,325.43

 736.46

Mundaring

 3,640.67

 3,109.18

 531.49

Swan

11,982.42

10,255.44

1,726.98

TOTAL (kg)

31,192.32

26,667.05

4,525.27

PERCENT (%)

100%

85.5%

14.5%

The EMRC and the member Councils do not collect data on commercial and industrial recycling, except where the products are managed through EMRC facilities – Red Hill Waste Management Facility and Hazelmere Resource Recovery Facility. Table 3 outlines the volume of material that was recycled from the EMRC facilities. There is the potential for businesses to improve reducing, reusing and recycling activities within the region and collaborate with councils on mechanisms to do so.

EMRC Facilities

Total Recycled 2018/19

Red Hill

 

Recycled Materials (tonnes)

431.59

Mulch (tonnes)
(This is the processessed Greenwaste from all sources)

5,829.98

Soil Improver (tonnes) 
(This is the processed Bayswater  MGB Greenwaste)

1,423.42

Total (kg)

7,684.99

Hazelmere

 

Wood Fines (tonnes)

11,929.11

Woodchip (tonnes)

289.63

Metal Nails (tonnes)

61.60

Total (kg)

12,280.34

Hazardous Substances

A substance is hazardous if it can catch fire, react or explode when mixed with other substances, if it releases dangerous vapours or odours or if it is corrosive or toxic. Among others, common hazardous materials in homes include Batteries and lightbulbs. If disposed of incorrectly, hazardous products have the potential to harm life in our rivers and lakes, and contaminate our drinking water and the food chain. The Waste Authority’s Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) Program provides facilities where householders can drop off unwanted hazardous items at no charge. The EMRC’s HHW facility is located at the Red Hill WMF. 

The EMRC dry cell (household) Battery Collection Program began in 2003 after recognising the need to address the issues associated with household batteries being disposed of in landfill, including the long-term impacts on soil and water quality. There are currently 107 schools and 40 public collection points in the EMRC region where residents can safely dispose of their single-use and rechargeable dry cell batteries. Table 4 shows the number of batteries that are diverted from landfill each year and instead are reprocessed into other products such as new batteries, street lights and steel frames for houses.

Financial Year

School locations - collection total (kg)

Public locations - collection total (kg)

Total Collected (kg)

Total Collected (tonnes)

Current FY

6,339.4

12,091.0

18,430.4

18.4

2017/2018

6,040.8

10,352.8

16,393.6

16.4

2016/2017

5,779.5

9,778.3

15,557.8

15.6

2015/2016

5,408.3

9,738.7

15,147.1

15.1

2014/2015

5,766.0

10,014.1

15,780.1

15.8

2013/2014

5,640.7

9,187.1

14,827.8

14.8

Six Year Total

34,974.7

61,162.0

96,136.7

96.1

A similar program for compact fluorescent light globes and tubes (CFL’s) commenced in the eastern metropolitan region in 2008. Although CFLs result in significant energy savings, small quantities of mercury in the globes meant that a safe disposal system was warranted. At present, there are 27 public collection points in the eastern region where residents can drop-off their used CFLs. Table 5 outlines the volume of CFL’s that have been collected in the region in the last six years.

Financial Year

Total Collected from Public locations (kg)

Total Collected (tonnes)

Current FY

1,784.2

1.8

2017/2018

1,487.2

1.5

2016/2017

1,486.5

1.5

2015/2016

859.1

0.9

2014/2015

898.3

0.9

2013/2014

751.7

0.8

Six Year Total

7,267.0

7.3

EMRC’s battery collection and CFL programs are delivering a wide range of environmental, social and economic benefits to the region. With more schools and public locations being added to the program all the time, the EMRC and the member Councils are ensuring that we and generations to come can enjoy a more sustainable future.

To find out more about recycling locations visit EMRC’s Fluorescent light recycling or Dry cell battery collection program pages or contact the Waste Education Team for more information

Ph: (08) 9424 2222

Email: Waste Education@emrc.org.au