Council and STePS become bed partners
  • Wednesday 29 September 2010

Piles of mattresses reaching skyward could be a thing of the past after council and community group STePS launched a trial today that will divert over 14,000 old mattresses from landfill each year.

This Coast first trial is a direct action from the Waste Minimisation Strategy developed in 2009 and will save around four Olympic swimming pools of valuable landfill space each year.

From 1 October, anyone wanting to dispose of an old mattress can do so at council transfer stations across the region. The cost for disposal is $10 for a foam mattress and $20 for a sprung mattress.

STePS employees will dismantle and recycle the foam, timber and steel by hand and all proceeds will go directly into funding the collection and destruction of the mattresses.

Environment Chair Cr Keryn Jones said mattresses take up about four Olympic swimming pools of space in our landfills each year.

“It makes so much sense to save that space, recycle the valuable resources and help out the community at the same time,” Cr Jones said.

“STePS is a real Sunshine Coast success story and we are very excited and proud to work with them.

“In 20 years, they have grown from a group of local parents assisting kids with special needs to where they are now one of Australia’s premier disability agencies helping people find work and skills through a national network.”

STePS CEO Carmel Crouch said this is a very exciting initiative that STePS had proposed to Council.

“Sustainability is about getting social and economic benefits while preserving our environment,” Ms Crouch said.

“Pulling out the steel, timber and foam will assist council to conserve this valuable landfill asset but will also help fund STePS in our work making the Coast a more inclusive society.”

Ms Crouch and Cr Jones both strongly suggested that people buying a new mattress ask the retailer to take away the old one and that will be recycled through the STePS project.

STePS will set up the project at Caloundra’s drive through recycling station on Pierce Avenue where STePS are already operating the shop and recycling systems.