Victoria announces $1.6M for recycling research projects

The state government announced $1.6 million for research projects, including roads and rail that create an end market for recycled materials otherwise sent to landfill.

Research institutions will also contribute funds to the nine research projects, worth $3.4 million to help build confidence and demand for recovered materials in local manufacturing, construction and other industries.

The projects will explore new ways to use glass, plastics, paper and cardboard as well as investigating new processing technologies for materials like e-waste.

The projects include roads and railway line noise walls made of recycled plastic with minimal use of virgin materials, precast concrete walls using waste glass fines and waste paper fibres as mix ingredients and the increased use of high proportions of recycled crushed glass in hot mix asphalt for road network rehabilitation.

The University of Melbourne and Deakin University will work to drive procurement of large volumes of recycled products into the commercial market.

Grants of up to $200,000 are part of the second round of the Research, Development and Demonstration Program and the state governments broader $4.5 million Market Development Program.

Minister for Environment Lily D’Ambrosio visited Green Bear Recycling’s resource recovery facility in Tottenham. The facility converts construction waste from housing into materials that can be used to build houses, creating a closed loop.

The facility is backed by $500,000 from the state government’s Resource Recovery Infrastructure Fund, which will divert more than 95,000 tonnes of waste from landfill each year.

The Green Bear Recycling funding has helped support cutting edge processing equipment including water and air separation technology to convert concrete and rubble waste into high quality sand, soil and metals.

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio said facilities like these backed by funding will help develop and end market for recycled materials, crucial to keeping them out of landfill.

“We’re backing innovative projects that explore new uses for recycled plastics and glass, while supporting businesses and creating local jobs.”

The funding is part of the $26.1 million Resource Recovery Infrastructure Fund, with 60 infrastructure projects the state government expects to create more than 400 jobs and divert at least 900,000 tonnes of material from landfill each year.

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