Bins out

urupare ana ki te hurika āhuaraki

responding to climate change

Climate change is the biggest challenge facing communities across the world, including Dunedin. The DCC began work to adapt to a changing environment (adaptation) more than a decade ago, and reduce emissions (mitigation) soon after.

Mitigation – our Zero Carbon 2030 target

In June 2019, the Council voted to declare a climate emergency and speed up efforts to become a net zero carbon city – bringing forward Dunedin’s target for achieving that goal by 20 years, to 2030.

To meet our Zero Carbon 2030 target we need to cut carbon emissions.

In the 10 year plan we’re prioritising investment to reduce emissions from transport (because it's our largest and fastest growing source of emissions), and waste (because we provide waste and recycling services, we can help make a difference).

At the same time, we’re working hard to lead by example by reducing the DCC’s own emissions.

Some of the practical things we’re doing right now include upgrading the city’s 15,000 streetlights to more energy efficient LEDs and replacing our vehicle fleet with EVs as they come up for replacement. Keep an eye out for New Zealand’s first electric mobile library here in Dunedin.

In the 10 year plan we’ve included budget to cut the DCC’s LPG use by about 80%. This includes:

  • $3.3 million to install a second heat recovery heat pump at Moana Pool (cutting 75% of our LPG use at the facility) and then installing either a wood pellet boiler or an air source heat pump (which would mean using no LPG at all)
  • working with other organisations to look at a low-emissions district energy scheme for parts of the central city. It works if several of the DCC’s facilities could join the scheme.

We’re also:

  • considering our zero carbon target when we make decisions about any big projects, such as the new Mosgiel Pool
  • making sure Dunedin’s voice is heard at a national level by making submissions to Government on key legislation
  • reaching out to mana whenua and other key partners to start working collaboratively on city-wide emissions reductions.

We can only achieve the Zero Carbon 2030 target if we all work together. In 2021-22, we’ll be working with the community to develop a zero carbon plan for Dunedin so we’re all clear about what needs to be done and how we’ll get there.

We’ve put $831,000 each year in the draft budget to progress this work.

Adaptation – South Dunedin Future

In terms of adapting to climate change, we face significant challenges, especially relating to sea level rise and more frequent severe storms causing flooding.

We’ve had a big project underway for several years that focuses on South Dunedin, which has been built on reclaimed land, has high groundwater levels and is vulnerable to sea level rise. We’re working with the community, the Otago Regional Council, central government and others on ways to adapt to these changes in the longer term.

Part of this project involves us spending about $37 million over the next decade, improving our stormwater systems to reduce South Dunedin’s flooding risk. We’re also developing a separate, but closely related, adaptation plan for the area’s coastline, which will look at coastal erosion and provide a long-term vision of how we could manage our coastline.

ka mimiti i te para

reducing our waste

We want to improve Dunedin’s whole waste system, including what we collect, what we recycle or re-use, and what has to go to a landfill.

The Council has committed to being part of a national and global movement to cut carbon emissions and reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfills.

Waste goals

Dunedin aims to be a zero waste city by 2030, and the DCC actively encourages waste reduction and recycling. The city will still need a way to dispose of some waste for many years to come. We are required to have a plan that sets both the direction for reducing waste and our goals for managing rubbish and recycling.

The Council adopted a new Waste Minimisation and Management Plan in 2020. The goals include:

  • being less reliant on overseas markets for recyclable items
  • advocating for, and educating people about, waste minimisation
  • protecting people’s health and the environment from the harmful effects of waste.

Here are some key things we’re working on to help us meet our goals.

We’re planning to spend about $21 million on new facilities to help us better manage and reduce our waste, and reduce emissions. All of this spending will happen in the first three years. These things include:

  • a facility, such as a worm farm, to process food waste and garden waste separately into a material that can be re-used, e.g. compost
  • new, improved equipment to sort the items from our yellow-lidded recycling bins so we reduce contamination and can more easily find markets for these recyclables
  • a second Rummage store, located in the central city/North Dunedin area to sell second-hand items
  • a facility where construction material that can be recycled is separated out and processed, e.g. crushing concrete so it can be used as a base for new roads
  • equipment to turn recycled plastics into pellets that can be made into new plastic products.

Smooth Hill/Green Island Landfill

We’ve got $56 million in the budget (2024-25 to 2028-29) to develop a new landfill at Smooth Hill, south of the city. Smooth Hill has been identified as a suitable site and we are working through the resource consent process.

With the Green Island Landfill coming to the end of its life, we need to develop a new, modern landfill. When the Green Island Landfill closes, we hope to put a solar farm on the site.

kerbside rubbish and recycling collection

Currently, the DCC provides a kerbside collection for rubbish and recycling in urban areas and rural townships. We’re looking at changes to this service because we want to encourage more recycling and less waste. We’re also getting rid of DCC black plastic rubbish bags.

In March/April last year, we asked you what you thought about ideas for a future kerbside collection service. Based on community feedback, and a Ministry for the Environment report recommending standardised kerbside collections across the country, we are asking what you think about two options for the future. With both options, we would replace the black rubbish bag with a red-lidded wheelie bin, keep the existing blue crate for glass and keep the yellow-lidded wheelie bin for mixed recycling.

Separating out food waste from green waste would provide better options for processing and reusing the materials. Food waste should be reduced as people become more aware of how much food they are throwing away. Taking food and green waste out of our landfill will also help us reduce our carbon emissions.

Four bins plus one

  • Keep blue crate for glass and yellow-lidded recycling bin
  • Replace the current black rubbish bag with a red-lidded wheelie bin
  • Separate food bin
  • Optional green waste bin paid for separately

Cost:

Estimated rates in the first year of the new service.

Four bins: $270 – $310

Optional garden waste bin (additional cost): $140 – $180

KEEP THESE

Blue bin 45 litre

Fortnightly
glass recycling

Yellow bin 8-240 litre

Fortnightly
mixed recycling

PLUS NEW

Red bin 80-140 litre

Fortnightly
general waste

Green bin 23 litre

Weekly
food waste

NEW optional

Green bin 240 litre

Fortnightly
garden waste

Three bins

  • Keep blue crate for glass and yellow-lidded recycling bin
  • Replace the current black rubbish bag with a red-lidded wheelie bin

KEEP THESE

Blue bin 45 litre

Fortnightly glass
recycling

Yellow bin 8-240 litre

Fortnightly mixed
recycling

PLUS NEW

Red bin 80-140 litre

Weekly
general waste

Cost:

Estimated rates in the first year of the new service.

$260 – $300

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