Waste levy suspended to help NSW fire victims
"These bush fires have caused destruction on a huge scale and the task of re-building will be immense. My thoughts are with those who have lost their homes and businesses," Mr O'Farrell said.
"While fires are still burning across the state, people in some areas have been allowed to return to their homes and businesses and they have begun the clean-up and recovery process.
"This is a very difficult time for these people, which is why we are determined to do what we can to assist.
"To help residents and businesses re-build the NSW Government has now suspended its waste levy on all waste generated as a result of the bush fires, including bulk waste and asbestos.
“This change means residents taking bushfire waste to the tip will save between $53 and $107 per tonne of waste, depending on where they live.
"This is an important measure to help people who have lost everything in these bush fires – and it means they will not be charged NSW Government waste disposal fees as they clean-up their properties.
"I pay tribute to all the firefighters who have put their own safety at risk to protect the lives and property of others during this bush fire crisis."
To date the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has provided a waste levy exemption at the following landfills:
Hunter and Central Coast
- Buttonderry Landfill – Wyong Shire Council
- Awaba Landfill – Lake Macquarie Council
- Summerhill Landfill – Newcastle City Council
- SITA Port Stephens Landfill - Raymond Terrace
Western Sydney, Blue Mountains and Shoalhaven
- West Nowra Landfill and Huskisson Landfill - Shoalhaven City Council
- Bowral Waste Landfill - Bowral Waste Pty Ltd
- SITA Australia - Jacks Gully, Elizabeth Drive
- Lithgow Landfill - Lithgow Council
- Blaxland Landfill - Blue Mountains City Council
- Whytes Gully Landfill - Wollongong City Council
Ms Parker said many homes and businesses destroyed in the fires contain some form of asbestos.
"We want to make sure those residents and local businesses devastated by the fires get the support they need during the clean-up effort and don’t put themselves and their community at further risk," she said.
"It should be noted that while the NSW Government has waived the levy, some council fees may still apply at the tip gate.
"Councils in affected areas will be putting in place local arrangements for the collection and disposal of damaged goods, so affected communities should contact their local councils for more information about local waste collections and asbestos disposal arrangements.
"People who have concerns about asbestos in their home or business should get in touch with their local council or the NSW Environment Protection Authority who will be able to provide advice and assistance about safe removal and disposal procedures."
For more information call the EPA’s Environment Line on 131 555.