THE Gladstone Regional Council is not all hot air when it comes to environmental issues – the waste services department is leading the way in recycling.
While many Queensland councils are still playing catch-up, the council has had green measures in place to help save the planet and avoid huge carbon tax bills.
An initiative to capture toxic gases from old fridges, freezers and air-conditioners, and recycle the white goods, is being taken on board by other councils.
The council's waste services manager Charlie Sotiris said the free service encouraged residents to get old items out of circulation.
“Council accepts white goods such as refrigerators and air conditioners at waste facilities,” Mr Sotiris said.
“These are stockpiled on site and a contractor who holds a restricted refrigerant recoverer licence issued by the Australian Refrigeration Council is employed to degas these items.”
Recently 270 appliances were degassed. To ensure sound economics of the program, units are stockpiled and when a reasonable number are held, degassing by a licensed contractor is done before the appliances are sent to the scrap metal pile for recycling.
Mr Sotiris said the council also was working at landfills in the region to capture and destroy methane gas which was emitted from rotting waste.
“Landfills are recognised as large emitters of greenhouse gases due to methane generation. Methane is over 20 times more harmful than carbon dioxide,” he said.