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World first $95M recycling facility to open in Brisbane

A fully automated, $95 million recycling plant will soon begin turning construction and demolition waste into material for new infrastructure projects.

A fully automated, $95 million recycling plant will soon begin turning construction and demolition waste into material for new infrastructure projects.

The plant, located in Pinkenba, Brisbane, can process up to 475 tonnes an hour, the equivalent of 68 truckloads, and minimises the need for landfill.

Rino Recycling general manager, Dan Blaser, said the plant has scale, capacity and efficiency.

“It can recycle more than 1.5 million tonnes of waste with 97 per cent recovery annually whilst producing high quality products such as aggregates, sand, and road bases to the equivalent standard of quarried material but with significant environmental benefits,” he said.

“In under 20 minutes, a truck can go from offloading construction waste and leave with a new load of high- quality, recycled products ready for the job site. It is a green, circular economy in action.”

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Blaser said ahead of the infrastructure and construction boom driven by the Brisbane 2032 Olympics, the SEQ City Deal and the significant infrastructure pipeline in Brisbane, it is critical to have this new facility (the largest by volume in the world under one roof) to cater for new projects and lead the circular economy charge.

“This puts in place the infrastructure for developers and all levels of government to adopt a ‘recycled first’ policy when it comes to construction and waste management.”

Based on an independent report, it’s estimated the new recycling facility will help reduce carbon emissions by 55,000 tonnes per year – the equivalent of 909,000 trees planted or removing 12,000 cars from the road annually.

Rino Recycling’s director, Todd Pepper, said it could help Queensland lift its recycling rate from 68 per cent to 75 per cent, by recovering 97 per cent of the material fed into the plant.

“We are helping decarbonise through recycling waste and cutting greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the number of truck movements on the road,” Pepper said.

“The new facility is 13 kilometres from the CBD, so trucks have less distance to travel, and we are replacing the need to have to go to landfill sites west of the city, like Swanbank in Ipswich.”

The plant has an acre of rooftop solar panels for energy efficiency and recycles 35 thousand litres of water every hour, making it “water neutral”.

The facility has an expected opening date of late November 2023.

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