Product improvement Program recipients

Recipients – Round 2

Stream 1 - Infrastructure projects

Grants of between $50,000 and $1,000,000 were available to fund infrastructure projects.

Albury City Council ($55,187)

This project will install processing infrastructure to recover expanded polystyrene (EPS) currently being landfilled. It is anticipated that 100 tonnes will be recovered in the first year of operation, building to 430 tonnes per annum.

Astron Sustainability ($495,000)

Astron Sustainability will install specialised equipment into a new state of the art plastics recycling facility being setup in Albury, NSW. The greenfield project is part of a joint venture involving PACT Group, Cleanaway and Asahi and will process in excess of 28,000 tonnes of post-consumer plastic waste. The specialised equipment to be purchased through this funding will enable Astron to sort, clean, and reprocess over 3,000 - 5,000 tonnes per annum of baled low-value post-consumer mixed plastics into high-value commercial grade recycled HDPE, PP and LDPE resins. 

BSV Tyre Recycling ($351,500)

BSV will install a new crumb rubber production facility at its existing facility, with an annual production capacity of 2,080 tonnes per year. Crumb rubber will be supplied to local glue manufacturers, ashphalt producers and steel makers to help boost local manufacturing in NSW. 

Coast & Valley Oil Recyclers ($157,925)

Coast and Valley Oil propose to upgrade their existing facility and purchase equipment to process used oil filters into desirable end products, including oil, scrap metal and paper. This material is currently either being stockpiled or sent to landfill.

Elouera Association ($115,000)

Elouera aims to increase materials recovered at its Cootamundra MRF and reduce waste going to landfill. The project will add a new input hopper and bouncing belt to extract paper and cardboard, install new conveyors to improve the flow of materials, and a new plastics sorting station.

Manco Engineering ($900,000)

Manco will build a recycling facility in Western Sydney to process lower grade glass cullet and beneficiation plant rejects into fit-for-purpose products for use in engineering applications. The product can be used in water infrastructure remediation projects, road stabilisation and commercial industrial construction.  

SCE Recycling ($352,000)

SCE proposes to purchase and install a shredder unit at its Mayfield facility to process an additional 30,000 tpa of cement fibre board and 10,000 tpa of wood waste. The processed material will be for used for civil construction, landscaping and agricultural industry, considerably reducing the demand for virgin natural resources.

Suez Recycling & Recovery ($603,290) 

Suez will construct a recovered glass processing plant at its Spring Farm MRF,  to ‘close the loop’ on thousands of tonnes of glass. The facility will crush and waste glass collected from kerbside recycling, leading to increased recovery of recycled glass, greater access to end markets and creation of quality products to increase recycled content in locally manufactured products.

VISY Recycled Plastics ($1,000,000)

Visy propose to install a new HDPE plastic extrusion and sorting line that would reprocess up to 12,000 tpa of food grade quality recycled HDPE resin. This upgrade will significantly increase the availability of food grade quality resin to the Australian dairy industry and support the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation’s target of 30% recycled content. This project will increase recycled content in milk bottle packaging; increase domestic reprocessing capacity, and contribute to development of high quality markets for recycled HDPE.

Stream 2 - Research and development

Grants of between $20,000 and $150,000 were available to fund research and development projects.

Licella Holdings ($150,000)

Licella operates a pilot plant that converts plastic waste into a synthetic crude oil, to then make new plastics, fuels, waxes and bitumen. The project aims to retrofit Licella's pilot plant to allow impurities (such as non-organic compounds in inks, dyes and fillers from non-recyclable plastics) to be removed, without needing to shut down the plant. This will assist in the commercialisation of the process.

O&M Halyard Australia Pty Ltd ($20,150)

This project aims to pilot a product stewardship model to collect polypropylene sterilisation wrap from hospitals and transform it into saleable products that can be used by healthcare and other sectors to ‘close the loop’. Approximately 400,000kg of this material is used each year in NSW alone, with the majority ending up in landfill. The project will engage stakeholders to undertake a 12-month research project including a collection pilot in the Hunter, product design, research and development to explore processing and alternative uses for the material. Potential uses include conversion to a resin and compression moulding into timber-replacement products.  

UNSW Sydney ($50,000)

This project aims to research the use of thermal micronizing technology to create new higher value carbon products from thermoset plastic and tyre waste. It seeks to validate industrial conditions, opening up new recycling pathways and contributing to the circular economy.

Recipients – Round 1

Astron Plastics ($407,500)

Astron Plastics’s Ingleburn facility processes post-industrial plastic scrap into recycled resin. The facility is seeking to expand its operations to include the reprocessing of kerbside HDPE and PP from MRFs in addition to its current operations and will be able to process an additional 1,200 tonnes per annum of post-consumer plastics into recycled resin. Importantly, this project will enable Pact Group to increase the proportion of locally manufactured recycled resin, replacing imported virgin resin used in packaging manufacture.

Dunlop Flooring ($208,822)

Dunlop Flooring will purchase equipment that will help boost the recycling of foam waste materials and increase its reprocessing capacity from 5,000tpa to 10,000tpa. The new equipment will allow additional materials to be reprocessed and reduce current costs to reprocess waste foam.

Lockhart Shire Council ($221,850)

Lockhart Shire Council's project involves using a Pugmill to reprocess crushed glass from local MRF and blending it with gravel from Councils gravel quarries into manufactured road base materials to use on its local road network.

Pelletek Enviro ($211,000)

This project aims to increase the diversion of HDPE plastics from landfill including materials impacted by China’s National Sword policy. Pelletek will purchase extruding equipment for processing granulated recycled HDPE materials and manufacturing extruded pellets for use as a feedstock in agricultural fence products. This guarantees a high-quality feedstock supply to Pelletek's customers, giving them more control over the manufacturing process to achieve efficient processing and expansion of current end markets.

Plastic Forests ($499,982)

Plastic Forests requires additional equipment at its regional facility to increase its capacity to produce resin by reprocessing distressed and stockpiled plastic films resulting from China’s National Sword policy. The installation of a new cutter compactor resin extruder, film pre-sorting station, additional storage for both unprocessed baled film and finished resin, and additional materials handling equipment, will see an additional 3,000+ tonnes of plastic film diverted from landfill. The resin will be sold locally, exported or manufactured into a range of value-added sheet products.

SUEZ Recycling & Recovery Pty Ltd, Moruya ($350,150)

SUEZ’s Moruya MRF processes domestic recyclables from Eurobodalla Council. Currently, their paper product contains 6% contamination, some paper is lost to the container line, and the landfilled residual contains up to 30% unrecovered paper. SUEZ proposes to install a ballistic separator to increase the recovery of paper, and reduce contamination in the paper and plastic outputs. This will result in higher sale prices for paper and plastic, and greater recovery of material through the process. The paper output will meet the 0.5% contamination level now required for export to China.

SUEZ Recycling & Recovery Pty Ltd, Spring Farm ($1,000,000)

SUEZ produces a mixed paper output product from incoming domestic kerbside commingled recycling, at its Spring Farm MRF. The paper product previously exported to China, contains 10% contamination. Since the new 0.5% contamination limit set by China as a result of the National Sword initiative, the mixed paper product is being sold at unsustainably low prices to vulnerable local end markets. This project involves the installation of further paper processing equipment, to reduce the contamination in the paper output from 14% to 3%, to meet quality requirements for profitable sale to local paper mills as well as export to Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia.

Unilever ($297,305)

Unilever will accelerate local demand for Australian-sourced recycled HDPE plastic by introducing at least 25% recycled plastic, into its packaging for their home and personal care range, which is manufactured in their North Rocks factory. This will require investment of significant capital expenditure for new bottle moulds that can handle recycled plastic resin, and associated layering technology, and will allow them to achieve even greater recycled content in the future. The new recycled packaging will improve capability and increase demand within NSW for plastics recovered and recycled through households.

Segment times:
00:00 – 18:06     Introduction & update on EPA’s response to China’s National Sword policy
18:10 – 36:45     Circulate (Industrial Ecology Program)
36:46 – 50:31     Civil Construction Market Program
50:34 – 1:55:05  Product Improvement Program

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