Friday 11 August 2023 

 The Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association of Australia (WMRR) has called for the Australian Government to urgently move on the right to repair reforms or risk missing its target of a circular economy by 2030. 

 “If Australia is to achieve its target of a circular economy by 2030, we need to end our ‘bin it if it’s broken’ ways,” WMRR Chief Executive Gayle Sloan said. 

 “We can’t recycle our way out of trouble. We need to reduce waste in the first place and key to this is extending life!” she said. 

 “WMRR applauds the Australian Government for its target of a circular economy by 2030 and welcomes moves in this direction so far.  

 “However, right to repair reforms are desperately needed and the blueprint is there. The Productivity Commission and the ACCC did the work in 2021, yet so far we have not seen a response from Government.”  

 In October 2022, Federal and State Environment Ministers noted the scale and urgency of the environmental challenges to ‘design out waste and pollution, keep materials in use and foster markets to achieve a circular economy by 2030.’ 

 “Other countries have demonstrated it can be done. For example, France has introduced a repairability index at the point of sale similar to the energy efficiency rating on white goods; Austria allows consumers to claim back half the cost of their old electrical device repair; and some states in the US have digital right to repair laws.” 

 “Tackling e-waste is an important step down the path to achieving the goal of a circular economy. Action is urgently required if we are to do it by 2030. Regrettably, the scheme consulted on by government recently failed to include this necessary element of repair.” 

 ‘Right to repair’ is the ability of consumers to have their products repaired at a competitive price using a repairer of their choice. WMRR’s call comes as Griffith University, Ewaste Watch Institute, Clean Up Australia and the Australian Repair Network host the 2023 Australian Repair Summit in Canberra today.