A new national recycling plan has helped Australia meet its carbon targets, with a new report showing Australia’s total cardboard supply is on track to reach a record 7.7 billion pieces by 2026.

The Australian National University’s report on Australia’s recycling plan, published on Tuesday, said the country’s recycling efforts would lead to a net increase in recycling by about 25 per cent by 2020.

The government’s recycling strategy aims to cut Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 per cent from 1990 levels by 2030, compared to 2005 levels.

The goal is for Australia to have a net reduction of emissions from all sectors by 2020, the report found.

A spokesperson for the Department of Environment and Energy (DoE) said the plan was an important step forward for recycling.

“The plan recognises that the recycling sector is an important part of Australia’s economic prosperity, and it is critical that we continue to invest in this vital sector to support our nation’s economic growth,” the spokesperson said.

“We are investing in our recycling sector to achieve this.”

The plan aims to reduce Australia’s carbon emissions by around 5 per cent per annum from 1990 to 2026, the spokesperson added.

This means Australia is expected to reduce its carbon emissions from the industrial sector by around 25 per to 35 per cent compared to 1990 levels, the plan said.

The plan also includes a target to recycle 70 per cent of Australia and the Pacific island nation of Kiribati’s shipping and shipping-related waste by 2020 to reduce emissions by 18 per cent.

In the report, the DoE said the Government had achieved its goal of meeting the goal of recycling 50 per cent more cardboard than it used by 2020 and that the number of cardboard recycling plants was increasing.

It said the amount of cardboard that was produced each year was expected to double by 2034, which would lead Australia to become the world’s fifth largest cardboard recycler by 2025.

The report also said Australia was the first country to achieve a carbon emission reduction target of 100 per cent and the first to achieve zero waste emissions by 2025 with the development of the world-first cardboard recycling program.

“Our recycling strategy is a significant step forward in terms of achieving Australia’s 2020 carbon targets and we are pleased to see that we are well on our way to achieving this,” the DoEs spokesperson said in a statement.

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