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Landfill by the numbers

7 months ago

More than 100,000 tonnes of waste comes to the Southern Landfill every year so what happens to it all?

From that almost 20,000 tonnes is diverted, salvaged or recycled every year.

  • Green waste diverted to compost – approximately 5,800 tonnes per year

  • Food waste diverted to compost – approximately 1,600 tonnes per year

  • Scrap metal diversion – approximately 575 tonnes per year

  • Salvaged material and voluntary drop offs at the Tip Shop – estimated at 250 tonnes per year

  • Recycling from kerbside and the free recycling drop off – approximately 11,500 tonnes per year.

The remaining material is either too dangerous to be diverted, e.g. asbestos contaminated material, or there is currently no large scale and economically sustainable facilities that can divert this waste so it needs to be landfilled.

That said, we are always on the lookout for opportunities for diversion.

We helped start Kai to Compost, a bespoke private food waste collection service geared to service café’s, restaurants and businesses in the Wellington area. We have seen it grow to the point it is now run by a private waste company with the resources to improve the service.

By May 2020, we expect to run a trial to divert household kitchen food waste. This trial will help inform us on the best methods of kitchen food waste diversion for Wellingtonians.

There are some things YOU can do now to help us divert the waste that comes to the Southern Landfill.

  • Separate out your green waste – keep green waste separate from other waste. We can divert green waste to make compost at the Southern Landfill.

  • Keep building waste separate – separated wood can be dropped off at the Tip Shop. We can resell this timber. Metals can be dropped off at our scrap metal bin for free.

  • Stop by the Tip Shop before going to the transfer station or the tip face. We may be able to take some of your old furniture and sell it on to someone who needs it.

  • Take some time to understand what can and can’t be recycled, separate these out and use the Council’s free kerbside recycling collection service.

  • If you have large amounts of recyclable material, more than what can be taken as part of our kerbside recycling service, come to the Tip Shop at the Southern Landfill. We have bottle banks, paper/cardboard bins and plastic bins for you to drop off your recycling for free.

  • If you have a good idea on how to divert even more waste and are willing to make it work as a business, apply for one of our waste minimisation seed funds. We have funded successful diversion businesses like Again and Again.

  • If you hire businesses to do work on your behalf, e.g. a tradesman for a building project, ask them to separate any waste they produce to help with diversion and try to reuse material wherever possible.

For more about what can be recycled visit

For more about the Tip Shop visit or

Categories: Landfill information
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Richard Moore 5 months ago
With 2 other class 1 landfills within 40 minutes drive of the CBD this is yet another example of the failure of WCC to make the right infrastructure decisions at the right time. As the rest of our issues with waste and pollution of the natural environment we will look back on this choice with regret.

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