Two Illawarra operations have taken out titles at the state government’s annual Green Globe Awards, recognising their commitment to working ‘‘green’’.
Wollongong not-for-profit outfit Renewable Recyclers received the Regional Sustainability Award for its efforts to reduce e-waste while Oak Flats Bowling and Recreation Club won the Small Business Sustainability Award.
The awards, which were announced at NSW Parliament House on Tuesday night, aim to showcase environmental excellence statewide.
Renewable Recyclers business manager Miles Lochhead said the win was recognition of his team’s fight against e-waste.
‘‘We’ve been about sustainability since day one so it’s nice to have an acknowledgment of that,’’ he said.
‘‘[Our goal has always been to] work towards a sustainable Illawarra by [diverting] e-waste from landfill and recovering valuable, non-renewable resources that would otherwise be lost forever.’’
Staff pull apart tonnes of electronics so their parts can be reused or recycled.
While the operation has primarily focused on the environment, the organisation also creates jobs for unemployed and disadvantaged residents.
Since its inception in 2010 as a social arm of RichmondPRA, an organisation dedicated to supporting people with mental illnesses and their carers, Renewable Recyclers has provided work for 27 residents.
‘‘The thing that makes [us] stand out from others is that we not only provide economic and environmental outcomes but also social,’’ Mr Lochhead said.
‘‘[We have] staff from a variety of cultural backgrounds including Aboriginal, German, Italian, Tanzanian and Vietnamese and they were just thrilled with the win – they want to take the award and show their parents and friends.
‘‘It’s refreshing to work here, most of these people have come up in the unemployment queue and they just appreciate having a job.’’
Other winners included the GPT Group, Bankstown City Council and the Sydney Olympic Park Authority.