Golden Plains Shire is asking residents to have their say on the future of waste collection in the area.
The Golden Plains Shire mayor Owen Sharkey said that the amount of waste in the municipality was increasing as the population went up.
The council is currently reviewing its waste strategy. It has been affected significantly by the knock-on effect of China's national sword policy, which has drastically reduced the amount of recycling waste that could be exported.
Cr Sharkey said it was in everyone's interests to make sure there was reliable, cost-effective and sustainable waste management in the shire. He said that one of the key aims of the strategy and the consultation was to try and avoid waste going into landfill.
Historically, the council had one of the lowest rates of diverting waste from landfill. A previous figure of 23 per cent was improved to 38 per cent by changing the service to fortnightly waste and weekly recycling collections in 2015. However, that remains lower than the state average of 46 per cent.
Golden Plains Shire is one of many Victorian councils that has been forced to send kerbside recycling to landfill following the closure of plants operated by SKM Recycling.
Other local municipalities forced to take similar action include Moorabool and Pyrenees Shires. The City of Ballarat Council has so far avoided putting recycling collections into landfill after setting up a temporary materials recovery facility in Wendouree.
Golden Plains is also putting out its waste collection to tender.
There are four possible options being proposed for the waste collection, outlined in the authority's draft waste management strategy. These include options for food and organic and garden waste collection just for Bannockburn, the most densely populated area in the shire, and more expensive options for the entire municipality.
Cr Sharkey highlighted that neighbouring councils have garden and food waste services.
"We want to give Golden Plains Shire residents the same opportunity to consider if they support these options for our future waste management," he said.
He said he recognised people had strong views on the subject, and encouraged as many people as possible to complete the survey.
The state-wide recycling crisis was, he said, "a good example of why we need to talk about waste".
See http://goldenplains.vic.gov.au/consultations for full details on how to respond.
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