Resource Recovery Strategy and Action Plan 2020–2028

Our vision:

To be the first city in Australia to achieve ‘zero avoidable waste to landfill (‘zero-waste’)—Resource Recovery Strategy and Action Plan 2020–2028

This aligns with the State Government’s target for ‘the diversion of all waste from landfill where it is technologically, environmentally and economically practicable to do so. ‘Unavoidable’ waste therefore refers to wastes for which no other current treatment is available including (but not limited to) asbestos, toxic and quarantine waste.’

Resource Recovery Strategy and Action Plan 2020–2028

As an environmental leader, the City of Adelaide has a long and proud history of investing in helping our community live sustainably.

Through a review and assessment process, we discovered areas of opportunity to significantly improve how we manage and reduce our waste, recycling and organic materials.

The new Resource Recovery (organics, recycling and waste) Strategy and Action Plan 2020-2028 provides an eight-year framework to redefine the concept of waste, recover more resources, and build a circular economy in the City of Adelaide.

To deliver on our vision of zero-waste, we have identified 5 priority items, 5 target areas and key actions to help us achieve:

  • Divert 75 percent of residential kerbside collected waste from landfill  
  • Divert 90 percent of waste from City of Adelaide activities and events from landfill  
  • Reduce waste generation by 5 percent per capita  
  • Reduce contamination to below 10 percent in kerbside collected yellow co-mingled recycling  
  • Reduce food waste in the kerbside collected waste bin by 50 percent  
  • Apply the waste management hierarchy in all actions and consider material safety. 

Our priorities and target areas


Reduce food waste generation and increase diversion of food scrapes from landfill by 50 per cent.

Why? Food waste is expensive for residents and businesses, has high disposal costs for council and ratepayers, and harms the environment when it is sent to landfill.

Drive robust waste management education to all residents, businesses and users of our city

Why? Sometimes the community need some extra information and help to do their best to reduce their environmental impact.

Collaborate with industry, academia and entrepreneurs to develop innovative solutions and data collection methods to reach the Resource Recovery Vision.

Why? There are new ways of doing things and there are lots of opportunities to partner with others so we can do things better.

Support methods to establish waste avoidance, reduction, and improved resource recovery as central in business decision making, development applications, building plans, product design, manufacturing and waste systems design.

Why? Thinking about waste and recycling first instead as an afterthought means better outcomes.

Advocate and align policies, guidelines and practices to the circular economy Work internally and externally with different levels of government to drive long-term fundamental change in consumption and waste management.

Why? Moving towards a circular economy will reduce our risk and make our city more resilient.

Target Areas

Support residents and the community using the residential kerbside collection to achieve zero-waste at home.

Tailor supportive services to residential multi-unit dwellings (including apartments, low-rises, high rises) from development through to occupancy.

Expand support for businesses eligible for kerbside collection to include multi-disciplinary, bespoke advice on waste management, resource recovery and bin collection guidelines.

Establish public space like streets and Park Lands as places for resource recovery. 

Establish best practice waste management within City of Adelaide’s own operations, businesses, facilities and events.

Progress Report

To keep us on track, we will monitor and report on our progress annually to keep our community and stakeholders informed.

How we built the strategy and action plan

We have undertaken extensively community consultation and stakeholder engagement in the development of the strategy. You’ll find information on the community consultation at the Community Consultation website.

Need more information?

If you have any further questions, please contact our Resource Recovery team: