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Greens to clean up WA’s waste management mess

Greens MP Adele Carles has moved to restore the integrity of WA’s waste management, introducing amendments to a controversial bill which she says at the moment amounts to nothing more than a cash grab for the Department of Environment and Conservation.

The government’s Waste Avoidance and Resource Recovery Amendment Bill proposes to increase the landfill levy but then divert the bulk of it, 75%, to DEC rather than to fund waste management.

“I am extremely concerned about the money being siphoned off to help prop up the Department of Environment and Conservation,” Ms Carles said.

The Member for Fremantle said the Greens (WA) strongly support the principle behind the landfill levy to encourage recycling and reduce the amount of waste going to landfill.

“The landfill levy should be about creating financial incentives to divert waste. It should be about encouraging recycling.”

Ms Carles said she is also worried that this bill creates an unfair burden on local councils.

“It is unreasonable to expect local councils to collect what is essentially a tax for DEC.”

The Member for Fremantle said her amendments would remove the direct conflict of interest between the DEC and the Waste Authority.

“There is no incentive for the DEC to promote waste reduction as this would actually reduce the funding it receives,” Ms Carles said.

“What I propose is to restore integrity to the system. My amendments will ensure that the new landfill levy goes to waste reduction programs in WA under the control of the existing Waste Authority.”

“The Greens want incentives to cut down on the amount of waste going to landfill. There are various ways we can do this. One of our proposals is for a container deposit scheme to start in WA as a matter of urgency.”

“This scheme has been so successful in South Australia. SA recycles more than twice as much glass, 3 times as many aluminium cans and 4 times the amount of plastic containers as we do in WA,” the Member for Fremantle said.

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