Hundreds happy with tip tour
TURNING rubbish into valuable resources is a key objective of the Lismore Recycling & Recovery Centre that opened its doors to the public for the first time in 10 years yesterday.
More than 400 people took the opportunity to inspect the facility, taking part in bus tours as well as demonstrations on how different parts of the operation worked.
"The turnout exceeded our expectations," waste operations co-ordinator Kevin Trustum said.
Mr Trustum said the Open Day was to give people a better understanding of what goes on at one of the country's best waste processing facilities.
"People can ask the finer questions, see what we do and what has been changing," he said.
A key feature of the tour was the $3.65 million Materials Recovery Facility opened in May. The facility sorts the mixed recycling that is collected in yellow bins across the region.
Mr Trustum said of the 680 tonnes of waste collected each month as much as 95% was able to be processed, and even sold as a new resource.
He said the aim of the waste recovery facility was to make garbage collection a profitable activity for council rather than a cost.
The facility's Education Centre was a focus for children's activities on the day.
Lismore Heights resident Avi Sukhtankar took his family along to "get some idea how it all works," he said.
Lee and Jim Crethar took the bus tour of the facility and said everyone had gained a much better understanding of what happened at the site.
The day also included stalls showing people how to reduce their household waste.
Jo Hoy from Green House was promoting the "Love Food Hate Waste" program, aimed at getting people to throw out less food.
"People shouldn't be tempted to over-purchase because something is on special. Plan to buy what you are going to cook," she said.
Throwing away just one kilogram of potatoes was a waste of hundreds of litres of embodied water, she said.
Lismore Mayor Jenny Dowell said the event had been a popular success and could be repeated.
"I'm just so proud that Lismore is at the cutting edge of resource management," she said.