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Mackenzie District Council

Mackenzie District Council

Location: Canterbury, South Island
Population: 5000

Mackenzie District has one of the smallest populations in New Zealand.

Mackenzie’s 5000 residents are spread over an area of 7450 sq. kilometers, which includes the three towns of Fairlie, Tekapo and Twizel.

The awe-inspiring Mt Cook is situated in the Mackenzie, as well as renowned lakes Tekapo, Opuha and Pukaki. Lakes Ohau and Benmore form part of the southern boundary of the district.

In October 1999 a Zero Waste strategy was adopted and included in the District’s Waste Minimisation Plan.




Mackenzie District Council launched its new waste strategy in May 2002, incorporating:

  • A significant investment in people - a number of new staff have been employed in the resource recovery operations, to ensure the right people are at the "coal face" to promote the whole concept to the public

  • A comprehensive Education Programme, to encourage residents, businesses, schools and community groups to separate their waste

  • A 3-bag kerbside collection service for each of the three towns, which picks up clear bags for recyclables; green bags for organics; and black bags for residual waste

  • The operation of an in-vessel composting unit in Twizel, to process organic material into compost

  • The operation of three Resource Recovery Parks, to encourage waste separation, and allow for the collection, sorting and storing of recyclables, compostables, and residual waste

  • Closure of the local landfills and cartage of all residual waste out of the District for disposal in a properly engineered landfill

  • Creating financial incentives to encourage waste reduction, separation and recycling

The "Mackenzie Model" of Solid Waste Management

At the end of May 2002, Council launched its Zero Waste Strategy, moving from disposing of all refuse in landfills to a comprehensive system of waste separation at source and resource recovery.

Download the "Mackenzie Model" here (pdf26KB)

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