City cuts waste contamination rates as residents respond
RESIDENTS have come a long way since a recycling crisis engulfed the region last year, but there is still a long way to go, Ipswich City Council believes.
An ultimatum was issued to residents in April after recycling was temporarily suspended; clean up your act or risk losing the yellow bin.
Works, Parks and Recreation chief operating officer Bryce Hines said the council's community campaign to improve contamination rates had been successful.
"Ipswich City Council has been happy with the community's response to its Recycle4 campaign and the messages which went alongside - to include only paper, plastic, cardboard and tins/cans," he said.
"As widely publicised, the city's contamination rates across the city were too high.
"These dropped to below 20 per cent before Christmas and we hope the rates will continue to fall after another quarterly audit is completed in February."
In April the council announced it needed to drastically reduce contamination down from more than 50 per cent to a target of 15 per cent or less.
Glass, which when broken caused contamination of recycling bins, was banned.
Mr Hines has also responded to resident's concerns about recycling trucks dumping their load at waste transfer stations.
"Recycling trucks do not dump at Riverview," he said.
"Rather, they empty recycling loads in the pit at Riverview where recycling is sorted and bulked up for transport to the plant managed by Visy, council's current recycling contractor.
"On rare occasions, full loads might have to be dumped if there is a machinery failure or if the transfer station team are unable to sort contaminated loads."
Mr Hines said the more people who do the right thing, "the easier it is to manage recycling".
"I was at the transfer station just before Christmas watching a recyclate load be unloaded and sorted, and I hear 'clunk de clunk de clunk' in the back of the truck, and out rolls a complete microwave oven," he said.
"While this might seem funny at first, it's the type of thing that makes council's job much harder when doing the right thing with waste."
Glass drop-off points have been established across the city.
The council anticipates more than 2000 tonnes of glass will be sent to Owens-Illinois each year for recycling.
For more information about the drop-off points visit Ipswich.qld.gov.au.