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Looming paper recycling issues require an urgent onshore solution

Auckland Council is keen to undertake an in-depth feasibility study to find a solution for New Zealand’s looming paper and cardboard recycling crisis, as a matter of urgent priority.  In recognition of the need for a coordinated national approach, there is support for urgent action from local authorities across New Zealand.

The study would further existing work undertaken over the last 12 months by the Ministry for the Environment’s National Resource Recovery Taskforce and Auckland Council, focusing on how to best manage and process paper collected in local recycling systems across New Zealand.

China’s restriction on the importation of recyclable materials in early 2018, known as its ‘National Sword’ policy, has resulted in a reduction in export markets and a dramatic fall in the price paid for recovered mixed paper globally.

“As Kiwis, we are committed to recycling our used paper.  We all want to keep doing the right thing.  With changing global markets and limited onshore processing facilities, we lack the capacity to deal with our own paper.  Finding a New Zealand-based solution is a pressing need,” says Councillor Penny Hulse, the council’s Chair of the Community and Environment Committee.