Muswellbrook Waste and Recycling Facility now a dedicated Paintback drop-off point

Muswellbrook, the power is in your can

A NATIONAL initiative to keep millions of litres of excess paint and packaging from entering waterways and landfills is making its way to the Upper Hunter.

Paintback's a unique scheme funded by a 15 cent per litre levy, added to the wholesale price of architectural and decorative paint brands, which means residents can unload their unwanted paint free of charge.

And, now, Muswellbrook Waste and Recycling Facility on Coal Road, Muswellbrook, will be a dedicated Paintback drop-off point.

Australians buy more than 100 million litres of paint each year but around five per cent of it ends up as waste, making paint and its packaging one of the biggest sources of waste into landfill.

Paintback, which started in May 2016, was developed by the paint industry with the endorsement of commonwealth, state and territory governments.

It is one of the first schemes of its kind in the world.

Paintback is currently operating in more than 155 sites across Australia.

"We offer 85 per cent coverage to the population to keep millions of kilograms of paint and packaging out of landfill," Paintback Ltd chief executive Karen Gomez said.

"We are very pleased to have these new sites on board, such as Muswellbrook, and we will continue building our network of drop-off locations."

Paintback aims to maximise the inherent value of the waste resources it diverts from landfill.

For example, the steel and plastic packaging will be recycled.

The solvent paint can be used to replace fossil fuels in cement kilns and the water in latex paint can be re-used in industrial processes.

Paintback also funds research to help find better uses for unwanted paint.

The initiative is supported by 28 of the leading brands under Dulux, Taubmans, Haymes, Resene and Wattyl, which account for more than 90 per cent of all architectural and decorative paint sold in Australia.