Tasmanian local governments are hoping for better support from state and federal governments in the wake of a plastic waste export ban flagged by Prime Minister Scott Morrison during a meeting of state and territory leaders last week.
Local Government Association of Tasmania chief executive Katrena Stephenson welcomed the move but said there was now a "critical need" to support industry development and a shift in government procurement practices to use recycled materials in new road projects.
In December, the Kingborough council built what it said was the first Tasmanian road from soft plastics, recycled glass and used printer toner.
The 500 metre stretch used the equivalent of about two-years of single use plastic from the municipality.
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"We have been calling for greater leadership from federal and state governments on waste management and resource recovery for a number of years," Ms Stephenson said.
"With nationally-coordinated action on recycling, alongside the three levels of government working together, it will give industry the signal it needs to increase investment in sustainable resource recovery."
She added the sector looked forward to working with government and industry on the changes needed to support jobs, business and the environment.
Ms Stephenson's comments follow a similar call from the peak national body for local government for the use of plastics to be mandated in new projects.
The Tasmanian government released a draft Waste Action Plan for public consultation in late June, which set out a number of "ambitious, but achievable" waste reduction and resource recovery targets. Submissions are open until October 7.
In 2018, Australia exported nearly 4.5 million tonnes of waste. Most went to Vietnam, Indonesia and China, at a cost of $2.8 billion.
After last week's Council of Australian Governments meeting, environment ministers are set to work in consultation with industry to develop a timeline for the export changes.
"There's going to be a point in time where you're not going to be able to put this stuff in a ship and send it off to someone else," Mr Morrison said announcing the move in Cairns.
"We've got to start thinking about what we do when that happens, I would like that date to be as soon as is practicable."
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