Council's secret weapon to combat illegal dumping
Published 10 August 2021
Moreton Bay Regional Council is fighting back against illegal dumpers who are costing ratepayers more than $6.5 million in clean-up fees every year, thanks to new technology purchased with State Government funding.
Mayor Peter Flannery said the new MicroPhazir Asbestos Analyser was a game changer in the battle against irresponsible waste disposal as illegal dumping continues to rise in the Moreton Bay Region.
“Last financial year (2020-21) we had 263 tonnes of waste illegally dumped across numerous sites in the Moreton Bay Region, which is a 24% increase from the previous year (2019-20), he said.
“That’s roughly 7,000 wheelie bins worth of waste that includes hazardous waste like asbestos, which needs to be cleaned up and processed by Council at the cost of ratepayers.
“The new MicroPhazir Asbestos Analyser will help reduce those costs and help manage the public health risk associated with asbestos found within illegally dumped waste.
“Instead of waiting for laboratory testing for each individual dump site, we can now immediately identify asbestos onsite using the MicroPhazir Asbestos Analyser and begin managing this hazardous waste.
“Construction and demolition waste is the single largest category of waste we encounter at illegal dump sites, which we expect will continue given the region’s projected growth over the coming years.
“The fact that this problem even exists is disappointing to say the least - littering and illegal dumping can have huge adverse impacts on the environment and the health of residents, particularly when that waste contains hazardous material such as asbestos.
“Council’s Waste Services and Customer Response teams are working together to combat the issue by installing signage and covert cameras in illegal dumping hotspots.
“But there’s only so much Council can do. We’re not asking for much - we’re just asking residents and commercial customers to be responsible when it comes to disposing their waste.
“We cannot afford to have waste end up in our beautiful bushlands and waterways and cause harm to our precious environment.
“With one of the cheapest utilities charges in Queensland and with more waste facilities available to residents than most other local governments, illegal dumping in our region is not acceptable.”
This project is proudly supported by the Queensland Government.
For more information regarding which materials in the home or workplace contain asbestos and to plan for safe and responsible home renovations, please visit Search where to recycle or dispose - Asbestos and Asbestos | WorkSafe.qld.gov.au.
For more information about Council’s litter and illegal dumping programs, visit https://www.moretonbay.qld.gov.au/Services/Waste-Recycling/Litter-Illegal-Dumping.