Awapuni MRF

Figure 1 The MRF operated by Palmerston North City Council. Photo credit: PNCC

Palmerston North City Council collects over 4,000 tonnes of recycling from the Palmerston North kerbside collection service and owns their own MRF, which receives recycling from Horowhenua City Council, Waste Management – Palmerston North and New Plymouth, and Envirowaste – Palmerston North.

Annually, the MRF processes around 4,800 tonnes of material. The composition of the products are: 70% fibre; 13% plastics; 4% steel; 2% aluminium and 11% waste. These figures vary depending on the season and region of collection, but are reflective of the average values.

Currently, Palmerston North City Council sells 3 different grades of plastics to companies based in Aotearoa New Zealand. Clear PET (#1) is sold to Flight Plastics (see Case Study 3.6.8) and HDPE (#2) and PP (#5) are sold to a company based in Palmerston North, Aotearoa NZ Made.

The tonnages of plastic collected by Palmerston North City Council are shown in Table 28. There has been a decline over time in the total volume of plastic collected, including for higher value plastics (clear PET (#1) and HDPE natural (#2)).

Table 1 Palmerston North City Council kerbside collection by plastic grade

  Tonnes (% of total collection)
  2015/16 2016/17 2017/18 2018/19
PET clear (#1) 209.56 (3.72) 186.42 (3.90) 189.02 (3.95) 199.68 (4.65)
HDPE natural (#2) 93.72 (1.66) 81.4 (1.70) 70.62 (1.47) 74.36 (1.73)
HDPE coloured (#2) 35.76 (0.63) 78.24 (1.63) 99.6 (2.07) 81.36 (1.90)
PP (#5)* NA NA NA 7.2 (0.16)
Mixed plastics (#s 3,4,6,7) NA NA NA 240.48 (5.60)
Mixed plastics (#s 3-7) 206.88 (3.67) 157.68 (3.30) 213.84 (4.45) NA
Waste 735.41 (13.06) 784.19 (16.33) 784.19 (16.33) 570.32 (13.28)
Total collected for recycling 5628 4802 4805 4293

*May 2016 onwards, HDPE coloured (#2) separated from mixed plastics; January 2019 onwards, PP (#5) separated from mixed plastics (#s 3,4,6,7).


Of the 603 tonnes of plastic collected for recycling by Palmerston North City Council’s kerbside collection in 2018/19, 362 tonnes were recycled onshore


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