Changes to waste collection

The Kangaroo Island Council is considering switching to fortnightly collection of domestic waste, green organics and recyclables for implementation in 2017.

The decision was supported by investigation and research undertaken by FRWA between 2012 and 2014. This research included public consultation, several region-wide bin audits and a pilot program between October 2013 and February 2014 in Hayborough.

If members of the community would like to provide feedback they can write to either Council or to the FRWA. Answers to many of your questions and or concerns may be found in the FAQ’s below.

Frequently Asked Questions


When will this change go into effect?
1 September 2017



How can Council justify reducing this service? What do we get for our rates?
The changes to the kerbside waste collection will actually result in an increase in service to properties within townships -  residents will be offered 120 litres more overall capacity with the provision of a *green organics bin to properties in townships for organic waste including food scraps.  The aim is to also maintain/reduce overall costs of operation by standardising on machinery used and countering the significant additional costs of rubbish collection over such a large island. By increasing recycling and decreasing contamination we will also be able to reduce the volume of waste exported to mainland landfill at high (and increasing) cost. Please see FAQ # 6.

Rates cover some but not all Council services and are not a fee for service. Waste specific service charges cover waste collection, transport (off island), waste administration, EPA license, landfill management, large scale composting on the island and the costs of running the KI Resource Recovery Centre. Housefolds that have to bring their waste or recycling bins to a bin bank or farm gate for collection pay a discounted service charge based on the distance to the collection point. If a property owner has to travel 5km or farther to bring their bin out they do not pay the collection portion of the waste service charges.

* Pending KI Council adoption of the fortnightly kerbside collection schedule



The collection schedule will change; how will I know when to put out my bin(s)?
The new collection schedule will be included in the 2017 waste calendar which will be mailed out prior to the commencement of fortnightly collections and in time for the change to the system. The cycle of collection will be as follows:

One week residents will have their waste and green organics bin (applicable to townships) collected on the same day; the follwoing week yellow recycling bins will be collected.



Is Council doing this to save money?
No, Council is doing this to reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfill and to increase the rate of recycling and resource recovery. The cost of changing the frequency of recycling to fortnightly,  adding green organic collections and reducing waste collection to fortnightly is slightly less than making no change to the current system. There will be additional costs incurred from the initial implementation and education relevant to the program which will reduce and be eliminated over time. Council is aiming to avoid the increasing cost of sending waste-unnecessarily- to landfill.



I’m on a rural property and we don’t get an organics bin or collection so we’re really getting the short end of the stick!
Kangaroo Island is largely a rural landscape with many unsealed roads. It would not be economical or environmentally sound to have a dedicated green organics truck driving all over the island to pick-up organics bins in sparsely populated areas. Rural properties which will not receive a green organics collection still have the option to bring their garden waste to the KI Waste & Recycling Depot and at no additional charge. Rural properties generally have more space for composting, may also have chooks or livestock which may eat food scraps and also have the option of burning dry organics during the permitted season reducing the need for organics disposa. *Compost bins, worm farms and kitchen caddies for the collection and composting of food scraps will be 50% subsidised by the KI Council for all Island residents.

*Pending Ki Council adoption of the fortnightly kerbside collection schedule.



I am getting less rubbish picked up; how will I manage?
The sorting of your waste into the correct bin is the key to make the most of this new service which offers additional bin volume for organic waste.
Over a four week period the current total capacity of bins allows for: 
     4x140L (waste) and 4x140L (recycling) totalling 1120L
Over a four week period the new collections for residents within townships will allow for:
     2x140L (waste); 2x240L (recycling) and 2x240 green organics totalling 1240L
Over a four week period the new collections for redidents in rural areas will allow for:
     2x140L (waste) and 2x240L (recycling) totalling 760L

Bin audits conducted in 2012 and 2014 revealed both bins were on average 60% full and in any given week only 56% of waste bins were put out for collection. This shows us that there is unused bin capacity in many cases. The same audits also showed that there was a lot of recyclable and compostable material in the general waste bin which, if sorted correctly, would provide more bin space for landfill waste. Recycling bin audits show high levels of contamination which, if sorted correctly, would also have more capacity.

 reisWaste bins

It is important to stress that the preferred service does not reduce service levels but delivers an additional 120L capacity over a 4 week cycle when compared to the existing service. The waste audit conducted in 2014 also clearly shows that there is ample space in the waste bin to easily accommodate waste that should go in this bin.



Why change the current system- it works for me!
In May/June 2012, the Fleurieu Regional Waste Authority (FRWA) undertook a regional kerbside bin audit of selected properties within the areas of Alexandrina Council, Kangaroo Island Council, City of Victor Harbor and District Council of Yankalilla. The audit found that 55% of the general waste stream consisted of potentially recyclable materials (28% recyclables and 27% food/green waste). On the basis of this, FRWA recognized the potential to encourage diversion of waste from landfill by altering the bin collection schedule.

The 2014 FRWA bin audit delivered similar results to the 2012 audit, highlighting that valuable resources are still being sent to landfill:The average general waste bin contains (by weight) 16% recyclables, 9% green organics, 38% food & compostable paper, 6% other (electronic resources, clothing etc.) and only 31% waste!         

Renewable Resources Truck



We have a large family and our waste bin is always full each week!
The new Kerbside Waste Collection Policy aims to meet the needs of large families by allowing them-on application- one additional 140L general waste bin-collected fortnightly- at no extra charge. A large family is defined as a permanent residential dwelling in which 5 or more persons live for at least 5 nights per week on average. The second bin will need to be re-applied for each financial year (to confirm eligibility as the needs of residents may change). The second bin will be collected fortnightly on the same day as the other waste bin.



What will we do with out disposable nappies?
Households with 1 or more residents using disposable nappies can apply for a second general waste bin at no extra charge. Residents will be issued a sticker to affix to the second bin to notify the drivers to collect. The second bin will need to be re-applied for each financial year (to confirm eligibility as the needs of residents may change). Both waste bins will be collected fortnightly on the same day.

There are nappy disposal systems which compress and store dirty nappies in a tube that store, odor free, approximately one week’s worth of nappies. One such product is the Tommee Tippee Sanagenic nappy bin disposal system.



We have special medical needs in our household that fill our waste bin every week. How will we cope?
Households that produce waste from a medical condition and require the extra bin capacity may apply for one additional 140L general waste bin at no extra charge. A bin sticker for the second bin will be issued to the resident to facilitate collection. The second bin will need to be re-applied for each financial year (to confirm eligibility as the needs of residents may change). The extra waste bin will be collected fortnightly on the same day as the other waste bin.

This includes permanent private households that produce medical waste and does not include premises generating medical waste from a commercial operation, such as home massage or podiatry clinics.



Summer Collections:
The new Kerbside Waste Collection Policy will specify that general waste bins will be collected weekly, on the usual day, during the *peakummer school holiday period - as identified in the waste collection calendar- at no extra cost.

* The peak summer school holiday period is defined as from 1 week prior to Christmas until the end of January.

Outside the summer school holiday period all bins, including additional bins will be collected fortnightly.



Holiday maker/ holiday homes/seasonal:
Given that there are a substantial number of holiday homes on the Island that will be occupied by owners or holidaymakers, it is intended to collect the waste bin weekly for the summer school holiday period- as above. This will meet the needs of most holiday home owners; however, for holiday home owners there will be an option to purchase an additional service at $5.50 per service/lift with the resident to supply their own complying bin (up to three bins per waste type per property).

Note:  FRWA’s kerbside service is designed to meet the needs of residential ratepayers. Holiday rental properties are entitled to use the service as long as their waste production is similar in composition and volume to that of a residential property. Large volumes of waste, recyclables or organics and/or waste not typically generated in a domestic environment can be taken to the KI Resource Recovery Depot (additional fees might apply).

Outside the peak summer school holiday period - as identified in the waste collection calendar - all bins, including additional bins will be collected fortnightly.



My waste bin will smell if only picked up fortnightly:
Smells would mainly come from food scraps, nappies and/or animal waste in your bin.

  1. Keep the bin lid closed to keep odors in; wrap food scraps in newspaper or compostable bags.
  2. Fruit and vegetable food scraps can be composted at home or may go in your green organics bin to be composted off-site. *Subsidized composting equipment will be available to residents who wish to compost their food scraps at home and reduce the food waste going to the bin.
  3. *Kitchen food scrap caddies and compostable bags will be available for purchase at a subsidized price as well. Food scraps may go in your green bin loose or in the compostable bag. The compostable bag will contain most odors.
  4. Alternatively, freeze ‘smelly’ food waste (e.g. fish waste) until bin is put out for collection/then put it in the bin. note that all types of food scraps are acceptable in your green organics bin.
  5. Contain pet waste in a plastic or paper bag before placing in your general waste bin.
  6. If bins are kept reasonably clean, food scraps wrapped or bagged and bin lids closed, odors and/or flies should not be a problem.
  7. Rinse meat, seafood or poultry packaging before placing in the bin to reduce odours.
  8. Empty nappy contents into toilet. Wrap nappy in compostable bag or nappy disposal system which will help contain odours. Alternatively use cloth nappies, reduce waste and odours.

* Pending KI Council adoption of the fortnightly kerbside collection schedule.



Pests, vermin: If my waste bin sits out for 2 weeks it’s going to attract rats, mice, birds, flies and/or other insects. How will I manage that?
Keep the bin lid closed. If necessary place a heavy object such as a rock or brick to keep it closed in windy conditions but remember to remove it before collection. Alternatively there are commercial products available known as 'bin springs' in metal or plastic which will hold your bin shut in windy conditions. If your bin lid is broken, cracked or missing you may obtain another one from the KI Recovery and Recycling Depot at Kingscote. Contain food scraps in compostable bags, rinse meat/seafood/poultry packaging before 'binning' it to reduce smalls which would attract vermin.



We don’t have both types of bins, only a waste bin, what will we do?
Houses that currently don’t have both waste & recycling bins are encouraged to obtain a full set of bins for this purpose. Bins are available from the KI Resource Recovery Centre (KIRRC) outside of Kingscote. Each ratable property is entitled to one each of waste and recycling bins at no charge. Additional bins need to be purchased. 140L waste bins or recycling bins are $61 each. *With the implementation of fortnightly collections in September 2017, each ratable property with be given a 240L recycling bin and a 240L green organics bin**.

* Pending KI Council adoption of the fortnightly kerbside collection schedule.

**Green organics bins/collection will be provide for properties within the townships or more densely populated areas of the Island.



We are a Child Care Centre / School:
Schools are entitled to 1 - 140L waste bin but may purchase additional waste bins. The extra bins and service incur the extra bin collection fee of $5.50 per lift. With the implementation of the fortnightly collection schools may be issued with 240L general waste bins to facilitate adapting to the new collection schedule. 240L recycling bins will replace the 140L bins currently in use across the Island for all users of the kerbside system. Schools (Kindergarten to High School) are supported in their use of the kerbside recycling system by applying a formula of 1 recycling bin (as applicable) per 50 students. FRWA’s Education Officer is available to visit each school on KI, assess the waste/recycling systems currently in place and aim to resolve issues. Schools – depending on the number of students may require tailor made solutions to achieve sustainable waste management on campus.


17) I own a Restaurant (or Café), how can we cope with less waste pick-ups?
Depending on your volume of waste and if you cannot fit your general waste, recycling and organics into the prescribed bins with the new fortnightly collection schedule your business may need a second or third waste, recycling or green bin. Extra waste bins are available for purchase and a $5.50 per lift collection fee.

It is important that businesses recognize that FRWA’s kerbside service is designed to meet the needs of residential ratepayers and small businesses that produce waste similar to a household. If FRWA's collection service does not meet the needs of your business, you may need to engage a commercial waste service provider of which there are two operating on KI.



Are we allowed to have additional bins for waste if we want them?
Yes. Additional bins are available for purchase and with a collection service fee of $5.50 per lift if needed but with the introduction of kerbside green organics collection, additional general waste bins should be unnecessary in most cases. FRWA’s Education Officer will be available to visit your home or business to ensure that you are recycling as much as possible in order to reduce waste.



If I have extra waste that I can’t fit into my bin can I take it to the Depot?
Yes, you may take bags of extra waste to the KI Resource Recovery Centre free of charge.



Will Council allow us the option of paying extra and having a 240 litre waste bin?
No; our standard waste bin is the 140L size and our goal is to reduce waste to landfill and increase resource recovery. In special circumstances (Schools or situations with limited space) and at FRWA’s discretion there may be cases where a 240L waste bin is allowable.



We have our bins in a bin bank and they are often filled by others who dump their waste in and around our bins. Can you put public litter bins at our bin bank and label them as such so that tourists don't use our bins?
Council / FRWA will look to identify the source of additional waste and manage this appropriately.  This may include upgrading bin banks as well as putting in place an option for 'RV waste', potentially coinciding with black and grey water dumping points. Public Litter bins across the Island will be increased from 140L to 240L to alleviate this situation.



With this new program we are simply going to have to use public litter bins for our extra waste. 
Public Litter Bins are installed in areas of high recreational use, tourist destinations and town centers for waste generated as part of recreational activities. The proper use assists to keep our towns and tourist destinations tidy and Public Litter Bins are not for private use by individuals.



Bulky Waste Station (BWS) Closure:
Bulky waste stations (BWS) at Parndana, Penneshaw, Vivonne Bay and American River will close in June 2017. However during the transition period, from 1 July 2017 to 1 August 2017 items that were allowed to be dumped at the bulky waste stations (and would normally incur a fee to dispose of) may be dumped for free at the Kingscote Resource Recovery Centre (KIRRC).

The decision to close the bulky waste stations is a result of under-utilisation of the stations, the inherent inefficiency of handling and loading the materials, transporting them to the KIRRC, unloading and re-sorting the materials as well as the high cost of staffing the stations when they are open. Illegal dumping at BWS has occurred and is an ongoing issue. Work, health and safety are also an issue due to the work being done by a solo worker, manual handling in remote locations. The EPA requirement to remove all waste from the BWS on the same day it is received, presents a problem as it is often not possible to achieve this.



How and where can we recycling soft plastics on the island? If we could get this material out of our waste bins and into a recycling stream we would have a lot more bin space!
Presently there is not a soft plastics recycling scheme available on Kangaroo Island. On the mainland this is often offered at supermarkets such as Coles and Woolworths. The grocery stores on KI do not provide a soft plastics bin but this is a service we would like to see available and will enquire as to the possibility of introducing this for KI residents and visitors.



We need to get this right! Where and how are you going to inform us to recycle right and to know how to deal with the waste materials we have?
We will increase our educational activities across all sectors of the KI Community including education aimed at tourists and visitors to the Island. This will include: increased pictorial bin labelling, a pictorial booklet designed for the KI waste management system, presentations to Community and school groups, a Community outreach and education stall done through markets and shows, online informaiton through the Council and FRWA websites, Community service announcements broadcast on KI's Community radio, newspaper promotions and through postings to social media sites.



What will you do about illegal dumping - which will go through the roof if this idea goes through?
Dumping of household waste on the roadside, in the bush or on private property is illegal and fines apply. Responsible residents who are accustomed to putting their waste in a bin are highly unlikely to start dumping it in their Island environment. Most illegal dumping we see are items that don't fit in a bin or aren't disposed of through kerbside colelction, such as TV's, computers, mattresses, tyres, etc.

Kerbside waste audits reveal an unused bin capacity with the average bin being 64% full as well as containing an average of 75% of material which could have been recycled or composted. Recycling bin audits reveal bins with a 58% average fullness but also containing high levels of contamination or non-recyclable items. If these bins were correctly sorted, there would be even greater capacity to have the bins collected fortnightly without any hardship in most cases. There are exemptions for large households, residents using disposable nappies and those producing waste from a medical condition. Please see FAQ's #8, 9 and 10 for more information.

In Alexandrina Council, fortnightly collection of all three waste streams was implemented in July 2016. There has been no increase in the costs to Council for cleaning up illegal dumping - indicating that there has been no increase in illegal dumping since the introduction of fortnightly collection 7 months ago.



What about the health obligation of getting rid of our waste weekly? If it sits around for two weeks, we will have a sanitation crisis increasing vermin, flies and disease!
Keep your bin lid shut. Remove or reduce the amount of food scraps or food waste and soiled packaging from your bins. Empty you food packaging and rinse in the dish water after washing up. There is no need to use clean fresh waste to wash recyclables, a simple rinse after washing dishes will reduce odours and reduce the attraction of flies, birds, dogs, etc. Place food scraps in compostable bags in your green organics bin or in a contained compost system. Wrap any other sanitation items in newspaper or plastic bags to reduce smells and contain odours. Rather than increasing - most odours actually decrease after a week due to drying out. Contain pet waste in doggie bags if you put it in your bin, there would be alternative methods of dealing with this if you are on a rural property.



Our bins wil be too heavy to lift and bring our to the collection point if we don't have them emptied weekly and if we get a 240L recycling bin! How will we manage that?
Our recycling bin audits show that the average yield of weekly recycling collections was 1kg per household. If that were doubled or tripled, the recycling bin would still be of a weight manageable by most people. In situations where the bin is too heavy to lift onto a trailer, into a ute or two on a tow-ball to the collection point, then Council/FRWA may consider allowing residents to keep their 140L bin - which would still be collected fortnightly.

Do we have to take the larger bin if we don't want it? It might be too heavy for elderly.
As stated above in specific situations where residents cannot practially bring the bins to the collection point due to the increased weight or size, KI Council and FRWA may consider allowing residents to continue using the smaller 140L bins. The larger bin is meant to provide residents with more bin capacity to allow for and facilitate fortnightly collections.



Where and how will the green organics be processed? How can we put meat, fat and all types of food scraps in the green bin and know that it is safe and properly processed?
Garden waste and food scraps would be processed at the KIRRC where the existing green waste mulching process takes place. The food scrap component of the green organics would be diluted effectively by garden waste. The system KI Council and FRWA are already using is a pasteurization process wihch involves: spreading the organic material, picking out of contaminants, grinding material to a mulchable size, watering material to allow cooking process, turning as required to aerate and mix, taking daily/weekly temps to ensure the necessary heat is achieved to process and decompose the material to a safe standard. Vermin controls are in place and would be expanded to address any increased issues.

We have introduced this same system in Alexandrina Council and have found no issues with increased vermin or un-processed meat/fat/food scraps.



If we dont' get a green waste bin and collection, will we get a reducting in rates or service charges?
No, there is not a plan at present to reduce rates or service charges. Council rates are not a fee for service. Please see FAQ #2.



Why can't the truck collection red and green bins from both townships and rural properties?
A specfic truck will collection waste (red) bins from all accessible properties either at kerbside, from a farm gate or from a bin bank. Necessarily a different truck will collect organic waste from properties in township areas. Mixing of these loads would not achieve source separation. Please see FAQ #5 for more information.



We need the Bulky Waste Stations (BWS). We will not drive all the way to the KIRRC to dispose of those things that we bring to the BWS's - again people will dump this stuff whereve and the Island will be a mess!
Illegal dumping incurs a fine and is not a viable or responsible way to manage ones household waste. KI Council acknowledges the distance to KIRRC can be long depending on where you live on the Island. However, the items that would have been brought to BWS's are often items that one needs to dispose of infrequently such as washing machines, refrigerators, bbq's, etc.



Will we get a reduction in rates if you close the Bulky Waste Stations? I use it every month and need this option.
No, there is not a plan at present to reduce rates or service charges. Council rates are not a fee for service. Please see FAQ # 2. Please see FAQ #23 for more informatiion about the closure of BWS's.

We need the compound to drop off logs downed in storms. Why can't Council just burn there in Winter and not make us carry large, heavy things far away.
Please see FAQ #23. The decision to close the Bulky Waste Stations has many factors and reasons.



Baudin Beach, Muston and Island Beach need green bins too. Why can't we get this service?
The green waste collection is planned for areas with a higher concentration of permanent residents. Having a greens collection in areas of lower popultation and highly seasonal density is less efficient economically and environmentally. There are also constraints on the collection vehicle's capacity to handle increased volumes of green waste. Please also see FAQ #5.



What percentage of waste is caused by tourists? Can't we charge them a levy for waste disposal?
We don't know exactly what percentage of waste is caused by tourises on the Island although some estimates can be provided based on the monthly waste statistics.



When and if this happens will the collection routes be the same?
There will be some changes to the collection routes as they are historical and are not designed for collection efficiency. The collections will be made more efficient and the service improved by redesigning the rounds. There may be some changes to the day or time your bins are collected but the new collection calendar would be mailed out to all residents prior to the change.



What is being done to manage the waste produced by cruise ship visitors? Here for the day and they make a huge footprint and then leave and we have to deal with their waste!
KI Council and FRWA will address waste management in regards to the influx of visitors coming off cruise ships with the tour operators and Sealink. Clearly provisions need to be made at the Penneshaw dock area as well as in the Penneshaw Township where many visitors would shop, eat and linger.



How often will the Public litter bins be collected? Will they be larger? Will they be collected on the same schedule as domestic bins?
Public litter bins will be changed from the current 140L waste and recycling bins to 240L general waste bins in most cases. There are some areas where waste and recycling stations with bin enclosures exist - these systems will be monitored and will remain as is if the bin size is able to handle the volumes. Public litter bins are collected on a separate schedule from household bins. They will be emptied to varying schedules across the year and collections will respond to seasonal fluctuations. They may be emptied daily, bi-weekly, weekly or fortnightly depending on volumes of waste being generated on the Island.



How will you educate visitors? Can the Sealink ferry have an information video? Can each visitor be given a guide to managing waste on the Island? Something should be done because they produce a lot of waste and don't know what to do with it.
FRWA and KI Council accept and agree that visitors to KI may come from many parts of the state, country and world and would not necessarily understand the waste management systems in place on KI. We will work with Sealink on the idea of expanding the tourist information video to include some waste avoidance, recycling and litter education. We will provide a KI Visitors brochure to responsibly manage waste. We also plan to design and develop visual/pictorial bin labels to clarify what can be recycled in the kerbside bins and what should go in the landfill bins.



Has FRWA or KI Council put any thought into collecting waste weekly over the Easter and school holiday period in April? This is the busiest time for visitors to the Island!
Yes, there has been consideration but it is not in the plan at present to collect waste weekly over this 2 week school holiday period. Extra bin lifts are available for $5.50 per bin per lift for holiday homes/rentals. Bags of household waste, recyclable and organics can be brought to the KIRRC at no charge.



How will my business cope if there is a limit of 3 of each waste stream? We ahve 15 bins! What should we do? Others use our bins like tourists, campers, etc. Will you work with us to resolve these issues?
Yes, FRWA will work with businesses to assist with solutions to managing your waste. There are some bin situations that exist outside of our policies and there may be the need for exceptions in some situations. However, the kerbside system (which is designed for residential properties and small businesses with waste similar to a domestic household in composition and volume) can't be the answer to all business needs. In some cases, the business may need to engage a commercial waste service provider. Please also see FAQ #17.



With eight businesses now operating on Cape Willoughby Road, we need kerbside collection. Can FRWA and Council consider this? We are carting our bins 8kms each way and it's not fair.
KI Council and FRWA will review the service level at areas where there has been an increase in population and business activity. This will include an assessment of the accessiblity of rural areas for the collection vehicle as well as travel times and expected yields and the evaluation of all facts will inform the decision for the most efficient collection system.



 Last updated: 13 February 2017



Kangaroo Island Council | 43 Dauncey St (PO Box 121) KINGSCOTE SA 5223
Phone: 08 8553 4500 | Fax: 08 8553 2885 | Email:
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