Closing the loop on waste

Published 3:00pm 12 April 2021

Closing the loop on waste
Words by Jodie Powell

A free new online platform is helping Moreton Bay Region businesses turn waste into revenue.

Mayor Peter Flannery says the ASPIRE Circular Economy is a matching service for businesses to exchange or buy resources that would otherwise be discarded.

“This is a win-win-win initiative that protects the environment, boosts business opportunities, diverts waste from landfill and gives businesses a new income stream,” Mayor Flannery says.

“One business’s trash can now literally be another business’s treasure.

“Best of all there’s no middle-man, just log on to ASPIRE’s online marketplace where you can trade business waste as a resource - for free.”

Chairs, timber, vehicle parts can be recycled

Closing the loop on waste

Mayor Flannery says anything from old office chairs, paper and timber offcuts to used vehicle parts could be disposed of as part of the program.

“Aspire’s online platform sets businesses of up to 100 employees on the path to the circular economy by creating new supply chains, connecting businesses, building innovative solutions and helping everyone involved to recycle.”

Embedding a circular economy

Eckersley Print Group is the first Moreton Bay Region business to register with ASPIRE.

Marketing manager Lea Eckersley says the company uses a circular recycling loop for its paper waste, which is turned into recycled toilet paper rolls through a commercial arrangement with Australian Paper Collection.

She said Eckersleys also recycles cardboard and aluminium waste under similar arrangements, with about 200 aluminium print plates diverted from landfill each day.

Ms Eckersley says the ASPIRE platform will potentially help them extend their recycling operations even further.

Innovative thinking

“This is a great innovative initiative Council has taken to support local businesses in the Moreton Bay Region towards reducing business’s impact on the environment while simultaneously creating a viable commercial outcome for waste management,” she says.

“Eckersley Print Group, holding both the ISO 14001 Environmental Accreditation and full FSC certification, has been significantly invested in environmental sustainability for several years and commenced the closed recycling loop of our paper waste into toilet paper rolls in July 2020.

“ASPIRE will not only make it easier for us to continue our commitment to recycling but open up new avenues to connect with other businesses around our region via this platform.”

Linked to Regional Economic Development Strategy

ASPIRE is the first program to be launched as part of the implementation of the Moreton Bay Regional Council Regional Economic Development Strategy 2020-2041 (REDS).

As part of the REDS, Council aims to double the local economy to $40 billion, generate 100,000 new jobs and become one of Australia’s top 10 regional innovation hubs by 2041.

Businesses with up to 100 employees will have free access to the ASPIRE platform.
Search ‘ASPIRE’ at moretonbay.qld.gov.au

Find more local business news here.

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