A new roadmap released today by Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, has developed key strategies for creating jobs and reclaiming billions in economic value from plastic, glass, paper and tyres currently going into landfill.
The National Circular Economy Roadmap found innovation is crucial to realising Australia’s largest economic gains, which will come from designing new products and materials, including through advanced manufacturing, and in embracing new business models that will create domestic and export markets for waste streams.
This could more than triple job creation from resource recovery in Australia, where the recycling sector currently generates 9.2 jobs per 10,000 tonnes of waste, compared with only 2.8 jobs for the same amount of waste sent to landfill.
Increasing Australia’s recovery rate by just 5 per cent would add an estimated $1 billion to GDP.
The Australian Government’s ban on the export of waste last year creates an opportunity for a new circular economy strategy that turns landfill into economic returns.
CSIRO Chief Executive, Dr Larry Marshall, said science and technology can drive Australia’s next wave of economic opportunities.
“Australia is among the world’s best in advanced manufacturing and environmental research, and that unique science can turn industry and environment into partners by making sustainability profitable,” Dr Marshall said.
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