Industry takes matters into their own hands

Industry takes matters into their own hands

Launching the Waste of Origin pledge today, WMAA is challenging the industry to “join the fight against irresponsible, dangerous, and environmentally damaging practices in the sector”, and advocate best practice in the industry.

“My members see environmental stewardship and protection as key principles of their

businesses,” WMAA CEO Gayle Sloan said. Read more

Back to basics until "Fourth Industrial Revolution"

Back to basics until “Fourth Industrial Revolution”

Accepting their award at a small gathering in the Sydney APCO office, HP sustainability manager Lynn Loh attributed hard work and going back to basics to their win.

“There are always marketing spins around sustainability that you can adopt, but really going back to the basics is just a lot of hard work. We go back to our core focus areas to design packaging solutions that use less material, optimise shipping densities, and contain more recycled and recyclable content,” Loh told Inside Waste. Read more

Creating a profitable circular economy

Creating a profitable circular economy

We may, for the most part, have a successful kerbside collection system but French company 3Wayste has a vision to simplify household waste sorting and has a plant in France that is capable of sorting and recycling municipal solid waste from a single collection while ensuring 90% diversion from landfill. Currently this system complements a two-bin system, recyclables and waste.

In July, the 3Wayste team flew from their bases in France and Canada to meet with the Australian sector about their patented 3Wayste system, saying the conditions here were ripe. Read more

Hot-wiring microbial communities to boost biogas production

Hot-wiring microbial communities to boost biogas production

Mike Manefield from the University of New South Wales has developed and demonstrated how he can re-wire electron transfer processes in naturally occurring communities of microorganisms. His discovery has been demonstrated in the field to enhance gas yields from coal seams by an order of magnitude.

In explaining the process, Manefield says liberating gas from an organic feedstock – which can be either non-renewable like coal or renewable like algae or food waste – requires digestion by a complex community of different microorganisms. This process all boils down to electron transfer. Read more

Best practice landfill management

Best practice landfill management

To answer these questions, Inside Waste turned to Select Civil, an established landfill services provider that operates a number of sites across Australia, including Cleanaway’s Melbourne Regional Landfill and SUEZ’s Hallam Road site, both in Victoria.

In order to meet the demands of these large landfills, Select Civil operates a fleet of waste handling bulldozers, waste compactors, articulated dump trucks as well as a range of track loaders, trucks and excavators. However, in addition to its fleet, the company has also not shied away from using technology, specifically Cat’s computer aided earthmoving systems (CAES) to ensure best practice operations and to meet its clients’ demands. And according to Cat, Select Civil has been the “best implementer” in the region. Read more

Replas: recycled plastic manufacturer or sustainability educators?

Replas: recycled plastic manufacturer or sustainability educators?

Despite this – and almost three decades of experience in the recycling industry – Replas is only operating at around a third of their total capacity.

According to Replas territory manager (Victoria), Kelvin Agg, the absence of a circular economy severely limits the growth potential of the company.

“Unless we have a circular economy set up where we can take in the plastic, go through our whole process with [an end] product that can be purchased… then we sort of run into a dead-end unless that loop is closed off.” Read more

Saving a billion litres of water with IoT-based services

Saving a billion litres of water with IoT-based services

The key to the new service, Leak Insurance, is that WaterGroup is able to use Sigfox-based smart water meters to identify a leak on a customer site effectively as soon as it occurs, which enables customers to take the appropriate action to avoid further loss of water, eliminate the risk of damage to their property and deliver large savings in water costs.

WaterGroup managing director Guenter Hauber-Davidson said once an organisation contacts WaterGroup, the first step is to establish if the organisation is eligible for this service. Read more

Waste Opportunist: it's a question of trust

Waste Opportunist: it’s a question of trust

So why am I highlighting this as a critical issue that our sector must formally discuss now?  The Four Corners program on August 7 has, in my view, eroded the trust which householders and other stakeholders placed in our industry. The fall of commodity prices and nascent markets for the commodities we collect, along with the operational mechanics of our sector, have come as a shock to our stakeholders. We have seen our sector portrayed as environmental vandals, exploiters and criminals, and has also seen trusted (in my view) members of our sector being cross-examined and even ‘stood-down’.  How did it come to this? Read more

Better use of aquifers is the key in Broken Hill, not a new pipeline

Better use of aquifers is the key in Broken Hill, not a new pipeline

The groundwater experts say that the NSW government has so far appeared to ignore published scientific evidence on the Darling River floodplain resource by calling for tenders for the costly 270km long pipeline from the Murray.

The large fresh groundwater resources in the River Darling floodplain close to Menindee were reported publicly in 2013 as a sustainable, good quality water supply for Broken Hill after a three-year scientific study, the Broken Hill Managed Aquifer Recharge (BHMAR) project, led by Geoscience Australia with input from CSIRO. Read more

Contact lenses and blister packs now recyclable in Australia

Contact lenses and blister packs now recyclable in Australia

The Bausch + Lomb Recycling Programme has just launched in the country and it offers Australians the opportunity to recycle any brand of used contact lenses and blister packs for free.

Having already run a successful contact lenses recycling program with Bausch + Lomb in the US, TerraCycle Australian & New Zealand PR & marketing manager Gemma Kaczerepa says they were contacted by the local operations to implement something similar in Australia. Read more