Second Hand Saturday: massive recycling success

With over 700 garage sales held across the northern rivers region on Saturday, drawing thousands to shop for preloved items, treasures and collector pieces, Second Hand Saturday proved to be a huge success for recycling, reuse and fostering community connections.

‘We know that these garage sales saved tonnes of waste from going to landfill and precious resources from being wasted forever,’ said Education Coordinator for NE Waste, Linda Tohver. ‘Congratulations must go to our community for making this event a massive recycling success.’

Another added bonus of events such as Second Hand Saturday is the social interaction and community connections that are fostered.

‘Roaming the garage sales in our waste education van with performer P.E.T. – an avid garage sale shopper and promoter of living with less waste - we saw wonderful community spirit, including some great fundraising events.

We saw happy children playing with their ‘new’ preloved toys, happy teenagers finding a new Xbox game, happy parents sharing stories and offering parental advice whilst shopping for themselves as their children were entertained with preloved toys, happy collectors filling their trailers with ‘new’ purchases and happy garage sale sellers whose efforts were being rewarded. There were smiles all around and that’s the kind of community spirit we are trying to achieve through Second Hand Saturday,’ said Ms Tohver.

Second Hand Saturday also attracts those people who usually don’t hold garage sales, and those that have never shopped at a garage sale before. NE Waste and it’s member councils understand the benefits of campaigns such as this one in providing an opportunity to change people’s practices and participate in a recycling activity that they otherwise might not have.

If you did miss out on visiting the garage sales, don’t despair, as more will be held this Saturday 1st November. Check the Second Hand Saturday website to find out where and what is being sold.

NE Waste and its member Councils thank those that held and organised garage sales, or shopped at garage sales as part of Second Hand Saturday.

Second Hand Saturday is coordinated and funded by North East Waste on behalf of Ballina, Byron and Tweed Shires, Clarence and Richmond Valley, Lismore City and Kyogle Councils and the NSW EPA’s Waste Less Recycle More initiative

Linda Tohver
Education Coordinator
North East Waste || P: 02 6685 3651 || M: 0427 770 198

For further information, or a personal comment from General Manager John Walker, please contact Sharon Davidson on 02 6660 0257 or 0419 401 214

Media release: Wednesday 29 October 2014

Level 1 Water Restrictions - Casino, Kyogle and Bonalbo

Due to the continuing dry conditions and resultant low flows in the Richmond River and Peacock Creek, residents are advised that Level 1 water restrictions for Casino, Kyogle and Bonalbo are to come into force on Midnight, Wednesday 22 October 2014 as follows :-

Sprinklers and fixed hoses (including soaker hoses) shall NOT be used between the hours of 8 am and 4 pm.

Hand held hoses may be used at any time, but to conserve water it is recommended that watering is only done during the cooler periods of early morning or evening. Exceptions are allowed for essential businesses where business hours dictate water use. Applications should be made in writing to the respective Council.

No restrictions apply for industrial or stock watering purposes.


It's time to rid your house of asbestos

Thirty tonnes of bonded asbestos have been collected across the northern rivers in the last three months, as part of the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Household Asbestos Disposal Scheme.  But we want more!

Under a 12 month trial, local Councils including Byron, Ballina, Richmond Valley, Clarence Valley, Lismore, Tweed and Kyogle Councils are offering reduced disposal costs for asbestos between 30% and  50%.  Councils are also offering householder kits, which can be used for the removal of up to 10m2 of bonded asbestos.

In the first three months of the program councils have responded to five illegal dumps containing asbestos across the region, with loads often dumped in bushland or local creeks. Clean up costs for asbestos are expensive, as licensed professionals must be employed to remove and clean the illegal dumpsite.

‘Residents in the Northern Rivers under the asbestos trial scheme can dispose of up to five tonnes by using a licensed asbestos removalist, Tash Morton said. “ To participate in the program residents should contact their local council to register for the scheme or download the online form.  A list of registered asbestos removalists are also available on our website at ‘.

It is a legal requirement that where more than 10 square metres of asbestos sheeting is to be removed, or the building is a work site where trades people and delivery people will be working, that a Workcover accredited contractor must be engaged to safely remove and transport the asbestos building waste.  Heavy penalties apply for failure to comply with this Workplace Health and Safety requirement.

Ten square metres are approximately three sheets of 2400 mm X 1200 mm of bonded asbestos.  The householder kits are for sale from Nammoona Landfill, Casino and Evans Head Council Offices for $110 and include all the safety gear required to safely remove 10m2 and bag for transport.  The fee includes a disposal voucher for the materials at Nammoona Landfill in Casino. 

Tash Morton from North East Waste explains, “Residents may also use other participating tips in the region without the use of the kit.  However, householders must follow important safety requirements to ensure that the people performing asbestos removal, and anyone who uses the space after the asbestos has been removed, are not harmed by the asbestos fibres left behind after the job has been completed.  When householders arrive with their double wrapped load at the tip, under the scheme the Council will accept a maximum of 250kg at the reduced fee”.

Participating landfills in the northern rivers and the cost of asbestos disposal under the HADS include Kyogle Landfill ($80/T), Wyrallah Road Landfill at Lismore ($200/T), Grafton Landfill ($151.30/T), Stotts Creek Landfill in Tweed ($85/T), and Nammoona Landfill in Casino ($154.60/T).

This project is a NSW EPA Waste Less, Recycle More initiative funded from the waste levy.  For more information on the scheme go to

Enquiries to                                                    

N:  Tash Morton                                                    
P: (02) 6684 5571                                                  

For further information, or a personal comment from General Manager John Walker, please contact Sharon Davidson on 02 6660 0257 or 0419 401 214

Media release: Tuesday 21 October 2014

Richmond Valley beaches best of the best

Richmond Valley beaches have again top scored in the annual NSW Government’s State of the Beaches report. For the fourth year in a row, Richmond Valley beaches scored 100 percent, compared to Ballina 60 percent, and Kempsey 40 percent.

Richmond Valley Council's General Manager John Walker said the recently released State of the Beaches Report 2013-2014 graded all four swimming spots monitored in the area as Very Good and Good, making the area's beaches some of the State's cleanest.

Mr Walker said this was good news for local beachgoers as they headed back to the surf, or to their favourite swimming spots, for another great summer.

He said visitors to the region could also be confident that our beaches were among the finest in NSW.

'For the Richmond Valley, this is an outstanding report card,' Mr Walker said.

'It is pleasing to know that water quality at beaches in the Richmond Valley is of a very high standard'.

'Put simply, local beachgoers and visitors to the Richmond Valley can expect clean beaches and excellent swimming conditions this summer.'

Key findings in the 2013-2014 report were:

  • Main Beach and Shark Bay were graded as Very Good. Water quality was suitable for swimming almost all of the time, with few significant sources of contamination.
  • Airforce Beach was graded as Good. Water quality at this site was also of a high standard and suitable for swimming for most of the time.
  • Evans River was graded as Good, with very good water quality during dry weather conditions, but swimming should be avoided during and following rainfall or when there are signs of stormwater pollution, such as discoloured water or floating debris. 

Mr Walker said while the report was good news, there were many things the community could do to help keep our swimming spots clean, such as placing litter in the bin and ensuring rubbish did not find its way into the stormwater system.

Media release: Monday 13 October 2014

Work to start on buffer zone at Casino flying-fox camp

RICHMOND Valley Council has been given approval to begin the removal and modification of trees adjacent to vulnerable properties affected by the flying-fox camp in Casino.  The aim of the habitat modification program is to provide an opportunity to increase the distance between flying foxes and residents without reducing roosting opportunities.  An ecologist was appointed to assess the habitat and found it to be suitable for modification work to start Wednesday 8 October and Thursday 9 October, weather permitting.

Work will involve the trimming and removal of selected non-indigenous trees, such as Cocus Palm and Jacaranda, and many listed noxious weeds including the Chinese Celtis, Green Cestrum, Camphor Laurel, broad-leaved Privet, and Crofton Weed, and will be conducted in the late afternoon and early evening while the flying foxes are out foraging.

An ecologist will be on site during the work to monitor the situation, and residents are asked to stay clear of the works where possible.

For further information, or a personal comment from General Manager John Walker, please contact Sharon Davidson on 02 6660 0257 or 0419 401 214.


Media release: Friday 3 October 2014

Richmond Valley Made (Do Not Delete)

The Richmond Valley is full of unique places, people and produce, all shaped (or ‘made’) by the local environment.  This is what makes the Richmond Valley area special.  Let’s shout about it. Let’s celebrate this diversity.  The ‘Richmond Valley Made’ icon allows us to stamp our pride across all that the valley has to offer.