Current Alerts and Notices (View all)

Road conditions(2) Swimming pools notice(1)

Dunedin City Council – Kaunihera-a-rohe o Otepoti
Dunedin from signal hill..

Landfill site alternatives

What do we do after Green Island Landfill closes? FAQs

The Green Island Landfill is approaching the end of its functional life sometime between 2023 and 2028.

Dunedin aspires to zero waste – and 2023 may seem like a long way off – and realistically we will still need a way to dispose of our waste for many years to come.

We need to think about our options now.

A Business Case investigation into every aspect of Dunedin waste and recycling, including collection and disposal, is underway now. This is happening alongside the waste assessment that will inform the WMMP review.

We are also talking to key interest groups in the community, getting ideas from other cities and gathering information about all aspects of waste in Dunedin. This will help us offer the best possible options for the city’s waste disposal.

These could include one or a mixture of:

  • increasing waste minimisation activities to reduce waste and divert material from going to landfill
  • developing a new landfill within the city boundaries (see Smooth Hill )
  • transporting Dunedin’s waste to another region’s landfill.

Other options may emerge from our investigations and consultation.

Frequently asked questions:

What would a new landfill cost if it goes ahead? - Costs will be significant for investigations, design, implementation, and operation of a new landfill. This will depend on the governance and operating model, but may include $20 million to $30 million for development of the site and associated infrastructure such as transfer stations. As an example, Napier/Hastings and New Plymouth are investing $15m-$20m in landfills, plus costs for establishment of new transfer stations. Operating a landfill is estimated to cost about $6m a year.

What alternatives are there to the Smooth Hill site? - While we aspire to a zero-waste future, the reality is that we will need somewhere to dispose of waste for many years to come. There are a range of other ways to manage the disposal of our waste. These include potentially extending the life of Green Island, trucking waste to existing landfills in the wider regional area, developing an alternative site in the Dunedin area (e.g. Smooth Hill), incineration or biological treatment of waste. All options will be considered – including how we can reduce or recycle more waste.

How long has the DCC been planning this? - The need for an alternative landfill or waste disposal site to Green Island was identified in the 1990s. Since then a range of options have been considered. The DCC started the Waste Futures project to ensure a robust and focused process so we can make key decisions over the next 12 months.

Why haven’t you done something about landfill consents etc, before now? - Several studies to investigate development arrangements and governance options for waste have been carried out over the last 14 years. These options have included Council Controlled Organisations, Council Controlled Trading Organisations, Private Public Partnerships, or exiting the landfill market.

Is a new landfill at Smooth Hill budgeted for? - The budget required for establishing a new facility at Smooth Hill (if required) will be decided during phase two of the Waste Futures project, which will include developing a detailed business case.

Would a new landfill at Smooth Hill increase rates? – It is likely the operating costs for a new landfill would be paid for through fees and charges for waste disposal services.

Would I have to drive to Smooth Hill to dispose of waste if it becomes the city’s landfill? - No, you wouldn’t. There would be transfer stations in the city for you to take waste to. It would be put into trucks for delivery it to the landfill. Smooth Hill would be a modern landfill facility, run to the latest health and safety standards; as such the public would not deliver waste directly to the site.

Given the increased truck traffic, would there be upgrades to the roads if Smooth Hill becomes the city’s landfill? Yes, there would be upgrades to the side roads accessing Smooth Hill Landfill if it goes ahead.

Still didn't find what you were looking for?