Australia has enough Kiwi rubbish, thanks

Caption: Coming soon to a bin night near you. Picture: Portlandia.

Australia?s decision to crack down and deport New Zealand lawbreakers living in Australia has generated some trans-Tasman friction. But, as Newsie reports, it turns out that we have quite literally had enough Kiwi rubbish. Quote:

Packaging and other material that’s been put in soft plastic recycling bins has ended up in storage, because the Australian company that was taking it has been inundated. End of quote.

Like too many of these feel-good ?environmental? programs, schemes that sound good in a press release or government advertising turn out to not work so well in reality. Quote:

The soft plastic recycling scheme, run by the Packaging Forum, has been operating since 2015 and now covers about 70 percent of the country, with further expansion planned.

The material being put in the bins in supermarkets had been going to a company in Australia, to be turned into things like park benches, bollards and playground equipment.

But the scheme’s manager, Lyn Mayes, said the company wasn’t taking soft plastic from New Zealand anymore, because it was getting too much. End of quote.

Shipping all that stuff across the Tasman takes an awful lot of fossil fuels, too, which seems to undermine the whole ?Reduce, Reuse, Recycle? mantra. Why not process them locally? Quote:

Ms Mayes said the scheme had been looking for a local company to process it instead.

“We have actually signed a supply agreement with a new company and we’ll be making some announcements around that very soon,” she said.

In the meantime, a lot of that soft plastic is being kept in storage and stockpiled until it can be recycled, or it is being used in processing trials. End quote.

It would be merely unkind to suggest that that sounds like ?dumped at the tip?. End of quote.

But the problem with these massive recycling schemes is that they just become unwieldy state-run behemoths. When governments encourage people to feel like they?re ?doing something? by putting stuff in the recycling bin, people are going to try and earn as many virtue-points as they can, by ?recycling? anything and everything. Quote:

they had found that processors had become a lot fussier about the quality of plastic they were being sent.

That meant people needed to be much more careful about what they were putting in the bins, Ms Mayes said.

“If people do put in metals, or coffee cups, or drink containers, then that will contaminate the whole bag.”

Those bags would not then be collected. End of quote.

We know where this is going to go. It won?t be long before rubbish night turns every street into a rainbow of bins, while gimlet-eyed Recycling Inspectors prowl the neighbourhood, looking out for mis-cycling miscreants. Recycling Re-Education camps will boom. Quote:

Last year, 365 tonnes of soft plastic was collected by the recycling scheme.

That figure was expected to grow to 600 tonnes this year. End of quote.

That?s a lot of rubbish. But then, virtue-signalling green schemes usually are.