Island recycling and waste centres now accept asbestos materials


Redlands Coast island residents and commercial customers are now permitted to dispose of asbestos-containing materials, fibro and cement sheeting materials at their local recycling and waste centres.

Mayor Karen Williams said Redland City Council would now permit asbestos-containing materials, fibro and cement sheeting disposal at the recycling and waste centres on Russell, Macleay, Coochiemudlo and North Stradbroke islands.

The material was previously only accepted at mainland recycling and waste centres.

“Asbestos-containing materials, fibro and cement sheeting must be handled properly and disposed of at a licenced facility,” Cr Williams said.

“Accepting these materials at our island recycling and waste centres will make it far more convenient for residents, particularly if they are doing repairs on their homes.”

Cr Williams said the facilities would accept actual or suspected asbestos-containing materials, fibro and cement sheeting up to 10m2 or less than 250kg.

Residential disposal of this amount was free with proof of residency and photo identification. Commercial and non-residential loads would attract a fee. Fees would apply if the material was generated or transported by a commercial builder or contractor. Fees for the disposal of asbestos-containing materials, fibro or cement sheeting can be found on Council’s website.

“Before you visit a Council recycling and waste centre, please ensure you follow the conditions of disposal,” Cr Williams said.

“The materials should be double wrapped in thick (minimum 0.2mm) plastic sheeting, securely sealed with duct tape and unloaded by hand into the designated asbestos disposal bin.”

Cr Williams said that it was a legislative requirement that customers declared these materials at the gatehouse upon entering the recycling and waste centre.

“Council staff will inspect loads upon arrival and customers with actual or suspected asbestos-containing materials, fibro and cement sheeting that isn’t wrapped appropriately will be instructed to leave the centre and return once the material is properly wrapped for disposal,” Cr Williams said.

Cr Mark Edwards (Division 5) said the decision to accept asbestos would be welcomed by the island communities.

“This review means it is now far more convenient for our island residents to safely dispose of these hazardous materials at their local island recycling and waste centres,” Cr Edwards said.

Cr Edwards said that Council treated all renovation materials with caution as they may contain harmful respirable fibres such as asbestos or silica.

“Asbestos was once used in Australia in fibre-cement building products such as sheeting, water drainage, roofing and guttering, and it is still found in buildings constructed up to the 1990s,” Cr Edwards said.

“Other types of materials that Council treats in the same manner as asbestos-containing waste include fibro, Villaboard, Millboard, super six roof sheeting, cement sheeting, HardieFlex, insulation board and backing boards on vinyl sheet flooring and tiles.

“So any resident doing work on their property should be on the lookout for this material. By taking the time and securely wrapping any original board from the home, residents can be assured they have made the right choice to protect their own health and that of the recycling and waste centre workers.”

Asbestos materials in good condition are unlikely to be a health risk if left undisturbed.

They become a health risk when asbestos fibres are released into the air and breathed in.

Identification, risks and safe-handling advice can be found online in the ‘Asbestos – a guide for householders and general public’ at health.gov.au