Australians generate about 67 million tonnes of waste a year, and that figure is growing.

The Australian Government is taking practical action on waste, to better manage it here in Australia and ensure our valuable resources are recycled and reused over and over again.

As part of our commitment to a $167 million Australian Recycling Investment Plan, $1.6 million is earmarked for a new Circular Economy Hub – an online market place to match sellers of recyclable materials with buyers.

This important initiative will drive innovation, make it easier for manufacturers to find and buy recycled materials, and grow demand for our recyclable resources.

A $20 million Product Stewardships Investment Fund will also help to fast track new recycling schemes. These schemes, like MobileMuster, will be led by manufacturers to improve recycling of their products

Our $167 million plan also includes:

$100 million Australian Recycling Investment Fund through the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, supporting energy efficient recycled products such as recycled content plastics.

$20 million for a Cooperative Research Centre grants to find new and innovative solutions to plastic recycling and waste.

$16 million to combat plastics and other waste in our oceans through the Pacific Ocean Litter Project – because we know that plastic litter is a global problem, as well as one we need to address here at home.

This builds on the commitments of all Australia’s environment ministers in 2018 to a new National Waste Policy.

This Policy has set a new unified direction for waste and recycling in Australia and is bringing all Australia’s governments together to solve Australia’s waste management problems – including plastic pollution, developing Australia’s recycling and waste management industry, and building markets for recycled materials.

This year’s World Environment Day is focusing on air pollution. In Australia we are fortunate our air quality rates among the world’s best. We want to make sure it stays that way.

Under the National Clean Air Agreement, we’re improving air quality via Product Emissions Standards. These standards were introduced in July last year to stop high-emitting products from coming in to Australia.

Since last July, more than 1.2 million engines and equipment have been imported that are compliant with these new standards. Regulating emissions from these small petrol engines will avoid $1.7 billion in health costs over 20 years.