About the study
A study into commercial and industrial (C&I) waste and recycling in Australia by industry division compiled data on waste and recycling performance. The report provides information about each of the industry divisions, such as the relative size, contribution to waste stream, materials recycled and opportunities for improvement. For example, the report found that food waste was a major component of the C&I waste stream. Opportunities to improve recycling and minimise waste include understanding the cost of waste services to business. This cost was estimated to be $2.2 billion per year, of which $1.4 billion is spent on waste to landfill costs. The total cost of material inputs that are subsequently disposed of as waste is estimated to be over $26.5 billion per year, of which a proportion is avoidable, demonstrating that there could be significant savings for businesses by using materials more efficiently.
This report contributes to Strategy 10 of the National Waste Policy: Less waste, more resources which states that governments, industry and business will collaborate to achieve major improvements in waste avoidance and re-use of materials in key areas of the commercial and industrial waste stream. The report was commissioned by the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities with assistance from the NSW Environment Protection Authority.