National Plastics Summit – Debrief
On the 2nd of March 2020 the Australian Government held the first ever National Plastics Summit, with more than 200 representatives from local and global businesses, state and local government, industry and community sectors making the trek to Canberra.
The Summit set the tone for the future of plastic waste management in Australia. It reinforces our commitment to working with industry to increase our domestic recycling capability, ensuring that the markets and economies required for recycled plastic products are able to foster properly and become self-supporting.
This is an important step in implementing our national waste export ban that was announced by the Prime Minister in August last year. We will be keeping more of the raw stock here for processing and remanufacturing, helping to lift industry capacity and increase our ability to use these materials constructively.
During the Summit the Prime Minister announced new reforms to Commonwealth procurement rules to ensure our agencies consider the importance of utilising recycled content as a factor in determining value for money.
There were many insights and recommendations born out of the Summit, there were some similarities and reoccurring themes around education and implementing national recycling and collection standards. I understand that the detailed recommendations are currently being reviewed and collated from each of the breakout sessions throughout the day and these will be formally put to the Minister for consideration.
There are still plenty of challenges ahead but we’re on track to address these and commence the appropriate overhaul of our domestic recycling industry. We’ve got some real momentum in this space now and I am very excited about the next steps in kick starting new industries both here in Far North Queensland and the broader national implementation.
The Hon Warren Entsch MP
Special Envoy for the Great Barrier Reef