Jobs in regional areas will be among the first products of the NSW Circular recycling and manufacturing network.
NSW Planning and Public Spaces Minister Rob Stokes has officially launched the new Circular Economy Innovation Network.
Mr Stokes said the network, known as NSW Circular, would help boost manufacturing jobs in regional NSW as the state moved away from the traditional ‘take, make and dispose’ model.
“This isn’t just the right thing to do for the environment; it makes good economic sense – there are significant jobs and growth opportunities for existing and new businesses across NSW.
Test projects to reduce landfill
Pilot projects are already underway through the network that aim to create new supply chains, turn trash into valuable products and materials for manufacturing, and divert waste from landfill.
The network, funded through the Office of the NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer, brings together industry, government, local councils, researchers and the community, and is led by Scientia Professor Veena Sahajwalla, Director of the Centre for Sustainable Materials Research and Technology (SMaRT) at UNSW Sydney.
Environment Minister Matt Kean said NSW Circular would complement other important initiatives already in development, including the government’s 20-Year Waste Strategy and Plastics Plan.
A circular economy with recycled resources
Professor Sahajwalla said: “I’m pleased to confirm that we have a number of pilot projects underway which are aimed at helping to divert waste from landfill and examine ways to create new supply chains.
“By working with and bringing together the many groups wanting better waste and recycling outcomes, which importantly includes those involved in materials recycling science, we are creating new solutions and a circular economy where we reuse and keep materials in use for as long as possible."
NSW Circular Board Chair, Emeritus Professor Margaret Harding, said: “The network board brings extensive experience with business, industry and government in designing and implementing circular economy programs and will support the team in identifying new opportunities.”