Visy was recently awarded the Institute of Professional Engineers (IPENZ) Arthur Mead Award for its Onehunga Materials Recovery Facility (MRF). Sharing the award with Tonkin & Taylor, a specialist environmental company, and the cities of Auckland and Manukau, the award recognises contributions to the preservation, conservation and improvement of the environment.According to Visy, the Onehunga MRF is a key component of the recycling strategy adopted by the cities of Auckland and Manukau. This includes increasing recycling rates by an additional 15 to 25 per cent and also addressing concerns around management of comingled waste.
The packaging and recycling giant says that its facility has the capacity to process around 50 tonnes of material an hour, which is due to the innovative design that enables it to be upgraded in a cost effective and straightforward way.
The Onehunga MRF services approximately 20 per cent of the country's population located in Auckland and Manukau alone. This equates to 265,000 households, with Visy processing an average of 70,000 tonnes of materials per annum.Visy also outlines that, established at a cost of the $21.9m and built within 13 months of contract award, the Onehunga MRF is one of the most sophisticated recycling facilities in the southern hemisphere. It has automated screens, magnets, eddy currents and optical sort machines that separate the waste, which not only greatly improves efficiency, but also the effectiveness of the MRF in recovering materials.