The Tasmanian Government will introduce a waste levy on landfill in the Apple Isle later this year.
The levy is expected to be introduced by November 2021, with Tasmania at present being the only jurisdiction in Australia without a waste tax.
When introduced, the levy will charge $20 per tonne of waste, increasing to $40 after two years and $60 after four years.
Landfill operators will be given an option to claim back the levy for waste removed from landfill through a resource recovery rebate.
The measure was included as part of Tasmania’s Waste and Resource Recovery Bill 2021 draft.
According to the Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association of Australia (WMRR), the levy price is too low to necessarily have any meaningful change on operators’ behaviours.
“While we appreciate the need to prepare for such a change, the Tasmanian Government’s proposed rate of $20 per tonne will not shift the dial to investment in resource recovery and Tasmanian jobs,” WMRR chief executive officer Gayle Sloan said. “It is simply too low to maximise, much less drive, resource recovery and landfill diversion.
“WMRR looks forward to continued engagement with the Minister on the levy rate and more ahead of the November roll-out.”
Although Sloan’s comments mostly expressed disappointment, she was still optimistic the levy could provide some environmental and economic benefits for Tasmania in the long-term.
“Ultimately, it is a really positive day for the WARR (waste avoidance and resource recovery) sector, community, and environment in Tasmania, with these announcements setting the state on a path of continued growth in capacity, which will no doubt lead to environmental and economic gains, including increased investment and job creation, and we congratulate the government for driving these important initiatives in Tasmania,” she said.