Australia’s national and Victorian governments have launched a new paper recycling infrastructure system at Visy’s paper recycling and remanufacturing campus in Coolaroo, Victoria.

The paper drum pulper has been installed with a total investment of A$42.5m ($27.33m), which consists of A$18.5m from Visy and the remaining A$24m co-invested by the Australian Government and the Victorian state government.  

A paper drum pulper helps in recycling mixed/contaminated paper to manufacture new products such as packaging for takeaway food and boxes for use in the agricultural sector.

The move is expected to boost Visy’s capabilities to recycle cardboard and paper collected from Victorian households.

The pulper is set to recycle an additional 95,000tpa of mixed paper and cardboard.

The investment is also in line with Visy’s executive chair Anthony Pratt’s commitment to invest A$2bn to minimise emissions and landfills across the business and to create job opportunities for the local community over the next ten years.

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This advanced drum pulper is a first-of-its-kind system in Australia, Pratt said.

Pratt added: “It will double Visy’s kerbside recycling capability in Victoria, diverting up to 180,000t of paper and cardboard annually from Victoria’s landfills or exports – equivalent of approximately an extra 400 Olympic swimming pools.”

This technology will increase Victoria’s existing capacity to recycle materials by more than 40%.

The Australian and Victorian Governments have also launched two new recycling projects with GT Recycling and EQ Plastics to divert an extra 11,600t of plastics from landfill in the state every year.

Commonwealth Environment and Water Minister Tanya Plibersek said: “This Australian-first paper and cardboard recycling facility is a perfect example of the kind of innovation we need to boost manufacturing in Australia while creating jobs.

“And it’s just one of the 128 projects funded so far from our A$250 Recycling Modernisation Fund [RMF].”

The Australian government, through the RMF, is investing A$250m in recycling infrastructure nationally.

Utilising these same funds, the national and Queensland governments have launched new recycling projects to divert 69,000tpa of waste from Queensland’s landfill.

Estimated to be worth more than A$12.79m, the projects involve the participation of six companies, consisting of AA Sunstate Packaging, Action Products, Disruptive Packaging, Kriaris Recyclables Processing, Re.Group, and IQ Renew.