Waste Management and Minimisation Plan

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Waste Management and Minimisation Plan

See the brochure below for an update on how we are progressing against the current Waste Management and Minimisation Plan.

The current Waste Management and Minimisation Plan (WMMP), 2015 to 2021, was adopted by Council on 14 May 2015.


Thinking back to the 1990s we had a number of landfills dotted round the region affectionately referred to as rubbish dumps. Some of us will recall the weekend trips to the dump to get rid of the family rubbish - and to marvel at some of the treasures that people had thrown out. But by 1996 things were changing here. Council had taken over most of the dumps, capped them off, and built transfer stations at some of the sites. We had constructed a new landfill site known as Bluegums to the south of Blenheim and all the region’s waste was fed to this central location.

Recycling was not really on our radar back then but, as time went by, we saw the compost site established on the outskirts of town at Wither Road and we began to think about how we could recycle more from our households. The Blue Door served us well for many years in Blenheim, providing one of our first drop-off points for recycling. We tried various kerbside collection trials in Blenheim and Picton with mixed success. We introduced recycling trials at the transfer stations with Marlborough Waste.

Then we got serious.

The building of the Resource Recovery Centre and the Re-use Shop in 2009/10 was a huge step for us as a region. Now we had a facility that could process thousands of tonnes of our household items for recycling.

Introducing the kerbside recycling collection service to Blenheim and Picton diverted even more material away from the landfill.

We know this has not always been a smooth journey; some of our proposals were met with a lot of angst and worry at first. Change often brings challenges and concerns but, as we look at the infrastructure we have established and the amount of material we are recovering, reusing and recycling, we should all be very proud of what we have achieved as a community.

This plan spells out the issues that are still ahead of us. It offers a pro-active approach to addressing some of the challenges. We still send 40,000 tonnes of rubbish to the Bluegums landfill every year. That works out at 900 kilograms for each resident in Marlborough.

Of course the vast majority of this comes from the industrial and commercial sector. Our next plan - to set up a Commercial and Industrial Sorting Facility - will provide the region with an alternative to landfill and divert another 8,000 tonnes of material away from that very well engineered hole in the ground at Bluegums.

Council is determined to continue to reduce our reliance on landfill as the method of dealing with our waste and it gives me great pleasure to endorse this waste management and minimisation plan as the next stage on that journey.

Alistair Sowman

Goals, Objectives and Targets

The waste assessment carried out in November 2014 identified a number of options for consideration. For the period 2015 to 2021 the Council’s goals are:

  • Establish a Commercial Industrial Sorting Facility (CIF) by 1 July 2016
  • Investigate options for food waste reduction
  • Investigate options for co-mingled recycling (wheelie bins)
  • Investigate options for expanding direct access to recycling services including Public Place Recycling Schemes (PPRS)
  • Investigate options for expanding the processing of greenwaste into compost

This aligns Council with the New Zealand Waste Strategy which has two goals:

  • Reduce the harmful effect of waste
  • Improving the efficiency of resource use

For the period 2015 to 2021 the Council’s targets in relation to the above are:

  • Have the CIF operational and achieving a 60% diversion rate by 2017
  • Increase the amount of recycling collected from Renwick, Grovetown, Spring Creek, Tuamarina, Rapaura, and Rarangi by up to 400 tonnes per year
  • Reduce the amount of food waste sent to landfill each year via kerbside collections by 20% (200 tonnes) by 2017
  • Increase the amount of greenwaste processed through the Wither Road site each year by 10% (800 tonnes) by 2018

The latest waste assessment is listed below:

The revised WMMP 2015 to 2021 is listed below.

Waste Management and Minimisation Plan 2015 to 2021 (online version)