Mid Coast residents help social enterprise RRA divert 3295 tonnes of waste from landfill

RRA Mid Coast, Emillie Wilde.
RRA Mid Coast, Emillie Wilde.

Mid North Coast residents have demonstrated their great appetite for recycling, helping social enterprise, Resource Recovery Australia (RRA) to divert a massive 3295 tonnes of waste from landfill during 2020-21, up more than 700 tonnes on the previous year.

Putting this figure into perspective, that equates to more than 360 garbage trucks full of waste.

Announcing the result at the start of National Recycling Week 2021, which finishes on November 14, RRA general manager, Matt Curtis said the community had shown a real commitment to reducing waste through reuse, repair and recycling.

"The Mid Coast community has helped us to divert 3295 tonnes of waste from landfill in the 2020-21 financial year - a big part of our national total of 7653 tonnes," Mr Curtis said.

The Return and Earn Automated Depot team at Tuncurry processed 7.6 million containers and served 15,490 customers.

"Diverting waste from landfill has positive impacts on our environment," he said.

"With our #Waste2Wages model waste diversion means local jobs, and moving towards a circular economy with less reliance on virgin materials."

RRA is a national social enterprise that works in waste management to keep waste out of landfill, create jobs for people experiencing barriers to work and to engage and connect people in our communities. RRA operates in NSW, Queensland and the ACT across eight regions, expanding to sites in Taree, Toowoomba and Rockhampton in Queensland in 2020-21.

The Mid Coast community has helped us to divert 3295 tonnes of waste from landfill in the 2020-21 financial year - a big part of our national total of 7653 tonnes.

RRA general manager, Matt Curtis

RRA operated at five sites across the Mid Coast - Taree, Tuncurry, Stroud, Bulahdelah, and Tea Gardens - provided 48 employment opportunities in 2020-21.

The organisation provided 143 opportunities nationally.

In March the social enterprise began a new 10-year contract for Mid Coast operations which includes reuse shops, Community Recycling Centres, transfer stations and weighbridges.

"We are excited to have secured the sub-contract with JR Richards & Sons for operation of the MidCoast Waste Management Facilities," Mr Curtis said.

"The contract is the largest in RRA history and secures over 32 jobs for the next 10 years."

JR Richards and Sons chief business officer James Perry said:"JR Richards and Sons' working partnership with Resource Recovery plays a very important role in tackling some tough environmental and social challenges and opportunities facing the Mid Coast."

"Working together our teams have achieved significant results, even under some very difficult recent circumstances, and we look forward to building on this success," Mr Perry said.

To celebrate National Recycling Week 2021 RRA is also running its annual Reuse, Repair and Repurpose competition.

Mid Coast residents are encouraged to enter by submitting a photo of their reuse, repair or repurpose project.

The national winner will receive a $250 Visa gift card and a local winner will score a $150 Visa gift card.

Be quick. Entries close midday this Friday, November 12 with winners announced the Friday, November 19

To enter visit the RRA website, Reuse, Repair and Repurpose competition.