Wollongong City Council staff investigate more than 120 reports of illegally-dumped material, on average, every month. Now, it’s hoped a new, free recycling centre will put a dent in the number of dodgy disposals.
Soiled nappies and household appliances, including a fridge and a heater, were among the items incorrectly disposed of in a recent incident in the city’s northern suburbs.
The rubbish was found sprawled across a grassed area near the cycleway behind Bellambi’s Holy Spirit College last week.
Tony Twining, who uses the cycleway to get to and from work, reported the dump to the Environment Protection Authority (EPA).
“There are soiled disposable nappies with poo in them and that in the rubbish. It’s actually quite disgusting,” Mr Twining said.
“It’s just next to the bicycle path, it’s also not far from the lagoon area where all the ducks are. It’s a sensitive area.”
Mr Twining said it was the second illegal dump in the area that he had reported to the EPA in recent weeks.
A council spokeswoman said its regulation and enforcement team was investigating the latest dump.
“Once they have reviewed the site, council’s works crews will be tasked with removing the material and disposing of it appropriately,” the spokeswoman said.
“Dumped rubbish is an ongoing issue across the city and may include items left on public land, such as beside the cycleway in Bellambi, or left kerbside with items put out as part of council’s on-call household cleanup service.”
The latest investigation comes after the council’s new community recycling centre (CRC) – located at its Kembla Grange-based Whyte’s Gully Resource Recovery Park – was officially opened this week.
The centre accepts a number of problem wastes – including paints, oils, gas bottles, e-waste, batteries, smoke detectors and needle sharps – for free.
The CRC – which was built with a $190,000 grant from the NSW government’s Waste Less, Recycle program – is one of of 100 facilities being established across NSW and complements council’s existing recycling services.
The centre is open from 7.30am to 4.30pm weekdays and between 8am and 4pm on the weekend.