Taking the state's recycling waste could boost economy
REGIONS such as the Clarence Valley could regain their economic mojo by turning recycled plastics into light switches and fostering a micro-manufacturing sector.
This idea was outlined by Sustainable Australia president William Bourke who was visiting Grafton as part of a regional tour to promote his bid for the NSW Upper House.
"Recycled rubbish that used to go to China can be reallocated by a freight network into Grafton and then used at micro-manufacturing sites to make anything from plastic light switches to salt and pepper shakers," he said.
"Many things that we import can be micro-manufactured if we make it competitive by issuing freight subsidies and eliminating taxes in regional areas."
Mr Bourke explained this vision could be realised if Australia reduced its reliance on housing construction which was fuelling population growth in the cities.
And serious economic change was needed to free up more capital to be spent in regional Australia.
"In 1990, the banks used to lend over 60 per cent of their money to businesses, 25 per cent to housing and 15 per cent to personal loans. Today over 60 per cent goes to housing.
"Banks understandably invest their money in property because of the higher profits in housing and mortgages, so we would look to get rid of tax concessions like negative gearing and capital gains tax.
"This would help to ensure that more money was reallocated back into our factories, farms and small businesses."
He said the Sustainable Australia party was running on a "sensible centre" platform that focused on a sustainable environment, better planning, affordable housing, secure jobs and an end to what it sees as rampant over-development across the country.
"We are not interested in getting involved in those traditional left-right slanging matches, we want to focus on the big issues," Mr Bourke said.
"When it comes to planning we want to stop the over-development of housing before infrastructure goes in."
Who will you vote for in the seat of Clarence at the 2019 NSW Election?
This poll ended on 22 March 2019.
STEVE CANSDELL - Shooters, Fishers and Farmers
GREG CLANCY - Greens
TRENT GILBERT - Labor
CHRIS GULAPTIS - Nationals
THOM KOTIS - Sustainable Australia
DEBRAH NOVAK - Independent
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.