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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

TWO BILLION ALUMINIUM CANS TO BE RECYCLED


16 December 1998

Two billion aluminium cans a year will be recycled as a result of a commitment made by one of Australia's largest recyclers, Kaal Australia.

Federal Environment Minister, Robert Hill, says by raising its national recycling rate to 66.5 percent of aluminium cans by the year 2003, Kaal Australia is making a significant difference to the environment.

"Currently 1.6 billion cans are recycled each year - that's 25 000 tonnes of aluminium - Kaal Australia is increasing this amount to keep a further 6 000 tonnes of aluminium a year out of our cities' landfills.

"To meet its recycling commitment, Kaal Australia has established the 'Cash for Cans' network.

"The network will ensure there are more than 1 000 community operated aluminium can buy-back centres around Australia with a central collection facility in Sydney's Yennora.

"Central to the 'Cash for Cans' network is the largest aluminium recycling plant in the Southern Hemisphere - the result of a recent $3 million investment.

"Used aluminium cans are made into new cans and are the most recycled packaging material in Australia. Aluminium can production is getting closer to being a completely 'closed loop' production process.

"The 'buy-back' can collection centres are a significant community resource. It's where recycling begins and is also a source of income for some people. More than $30 million a year is fed back to the community through the many community groups which collect cans for fund raising," Senator Hill said.

Kaal Australia's Yennora facility is managed by the NSW Autism Association providing full time work for Autistic people who manage all the sorting and bailing activities.

For more information:
Senator Hill's Office, Matt Brown (02) 6277 7640 0419 693 513
Environment Australia, Eleanor Dean (02) 6274 1817

Commonwealth of Australia