Where your waste goes

Ever wondered what happens to your rubbish once it's picked up from your kerb? Waverley Council is one of six Sydney Councils that are turning your trash into treasure.


As our landfill space is becoming less and less available, there has been a push from the NSW Government to identify alternative ways to sustainably dispose of our waste. For Southern Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (SSROC) and its member councils, this has been an almost ten year journey from the initial concept to the delivery of a state-of-the-art Mechanical and Biological Treatment (MBT) facility that is expected to divert up to 60% of waste from landfill and reduce truck movements during waste transport.

The MBT facility will assist Council in meeting our resource recovery target of 75% by 2020, as we'll likely reach 65% resource recovery by the end of 2018. This goes a long way in achieving our ambitious waste targets as set out in our Sustainable Waste Strategy.

How does it work?

The red bin waste is collected at the kerbside and transferred to Veolia at their MBT Woodlawn location. The waste is then loaded into an enclosed system where various recyclable items mistakenly placed in the red bin and other contaminants are separated out. The remaining material is turned and air and water is added. Any methane gas produced in this stage is harvested and sent via pipes to create energy for the Woodlawn site.

Once the material leaves the MBT process, it is piled into a large warehouse to age and ferment. This process creates a compost material that is used to rehabilitate an old mine site. Any residual waste that is not compostable is sent to landfill.

A complete description of the MBT system can be found here.

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