Green light for waste facility

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A waste-sorting facility is to be established at Timaru’s Redruth refuse station as part of a proposed $1.4 million makeover of the facility. ‘Establishing a waste-sorting facility realises our best effort to divert timber to support the timber pyrolysis project and to divert recyclable, compostable and reusable materials
from landfill.’
The Timaru District Council has set aside $889,000 in its long-term plan for a new waste-sorting facility in the 2016/17 budget while $527,000 has been budgeted for a resource recovery park in the 2017/18 year.
Timaru District Council waste minimisation manager Ruth Clarke confirmed last week the project had been given a green light, and presented her report to The Courier.
The proposed interim project would require a partial build of the resource recovery park, funded from the 2016/17 wastesorting facility budget in order to accommodate the green waste and cleanfill drop-off facilities, she said.
‘‘This would enable the whole length of Redruth transfer station dropoff area to be used for the waste sort project, partially overcoming the limitation of space experienced during the trial.’’
Wastesorting trial results were based on the assumption a 15% diversion of waste to landfill could be achieved.
Based on data from various audits, the sorting trial was carried out over September, October and November 2015.
However, two factors became evident during the trial, according to the report.
‘‘Firstly, the data analysis highlighted the difference between sortable and nonsortable waste.
‘‘Only 31% of the waste stream to landfill can be handled through the waste sort facility.
‘‘Non-sortable wastes include ash, sawdust, sludge/ milliscreenings, hazardous and special wastes and kerbside redbin waste.’’
Secondly, in practice, mechanical sorting could only extract a portion of all the sortable waste. All figures in the report referred to the diversion achievable from the 31% of sortable waste.
The trial achieved a 13.7% diversion of sortable waste. Based on the trial data, 15% diversion was clearly achievable, but not financially viable. At 18.5% diversion, the project would be cost-neutral.
‘‘An estimated 18.5% diversion may be achieved with a full implementation of the waste sort project which will overcome some of the constraints of the trial,’’ Ms Clarke said.
‘‘Establishing a waste-sorting facility realises our best effort to divert timber to support the timber pyrolysis project and to divert recyclable, compostable and reusable materials from landfill.’’
The life of the landfill would be extended and benefit would accrue to future residents/ ratepayers of the Timaru district, she said.