Council tries to hedge dump bets

IF ROCKHAMPTON Regional Council sticks to its waste management plans, Yeppoon’s existing dump will not be expanded into a super tip until 2017.

Although Rockhampton’s Lakes Creek landfill will be full by the end of 2013, all available space at Gracemere tip will be used before the trucks start to transport rubbish to the coast.

The extra capacity in Gracemere gives the council a bit more breathing space to negotiate objections to the controversial Yeppoon plan which was announced out of the blue on Wednesday.

Mayor Brad Carter promised there would be an extensive environmental impact study to ensure that Yeppoon’s existing tip site could be extended to bury all the region’s waste for a period of more than 20 years.

The study will start in the next few months.

The council’s waste and recycling department is already preparing for big changes with the impending introduction of green-waste-tipping vouchers to all households within the council’s boundary.

Each domestic property will receive six vouchers with their rates notice at the end of July or early August.

The vouchers will enable residents to take green waste to landfills at no charge.

And thousands of homes at the coast and communities such as Mount Morgan, Bouldercombe, Bajool, Marmor and Ogmore will receive yellow-topped recycling bins in the coming months.

A new kerbside recycling service will begin in July, extending the existing service to residents of Rockhampton and Gracemere.

There will also be public consultation on the location of transfer stations – sites where domestic householders will be able to take rubbish without traipsing all the way to a landfill. There are currently eight waste transfer stations, which cost a total of $524,000 a year to run.

When Lakes Creek landfill closes, there will be a large transfer station on the site.

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