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Stage IV Upgrade Ready To Roll

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Cherbourg Material Recovery Facility manager Andrew Beckett at the Stage IV extension … the electromagnet which will separate steel from the waste flow is immediately behind him

August 22, 2019

The latest extension to Cherbourg’s recycling facility is about to come on line, lifting the potential maximum capacity of the facility to an impressive 10,000 tonnes per annum.

Cherbourg Material Recovery Facility manager Andrew Beckett said the Stage IV extension, which has been built with a Building Our Regions (BOR) grant from the State Government, would create a cleaner operation, both for workers in the plant and in the final baled products.

“It is a cleaner process. There will be less mess and the process will be more controlled,” Andrew said.

The extension is due to be commissioned on Monday, and if all goes well it will swing into action straight away.

An electromagnet at the start of the sorting belt immediately separates all steel waste into a separate hopper.

Workers manning the conveyor belt will then separate HDPE, PET and polypropylene plastics by hand into separate bins.

At the end of the belt, an eddy current separator automatically directs aluminium cans into their own hopper.

The leftover waste after all these processes is then gathered together and can be run along the line a second time to pick up anything missed.

Andrew said the extension had always been a part of the original design for the facility but they just had to get the funds.

A $999,297 State Government grant under Round 4 of the Building Our Regions scheme came to the rescue.

“We had the design ready. It was always in the master plan; now it’s a reality,” Andrew said.

The next upgrade planned is a new baling machine which will speed up the final part of the operation.

Andrew is quietly hopeful this could be installed as early as Christmas this year.

Footnote: While southburnett.com.au was at the facility on Friday, a large semi-trailer was being loaded with bales of recycled cardboard destined for Brisbane. Andrew said that while large truckloads of aluminium and plastic were common, this was the largest load of cardboard yet to leave the facility.

Andrew in front of the new Stage IV extension … each of the new collection cages can be remotely opened in turn, keeping the waste flow totally separated

Andrew admits he became a little sentimental (“this is where it all started” ) when the old conveyor belt was pulled out of the facility to make way for the new equipment . . . this belt dates back to the earliest days of the Cherbourg plant and has handled hundreds of thousands of cans and bottles over the years

A semi-trailer is loaded with baled cardboard ready to head to Brisbane


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