Uncovering the issues that waste managers face

Speaking at Waste 2017 in Coffs Harbour in April, former Local Government NSW (LGNSW) senior policy officer, Mark McKenzie – he left LGNSW shortly after the conference and is now a City of Canterbury Bankstown councillor – offered insights into waste management and planning, and discussed the issues faced by councils in NSW.

McKenzie noted that one of the biggest issues that councils face during the planning process is being caught in the middle and having to deal with competing stakeholders.

“Council might have a wonderful strategy mapped out to the nth degree – its future growth, the types of businesses involved, how many residences, all of those sorts of things – but you still have all of the impositions put on you on all of the aspects of the waste management and planning,” McKenzie said. Read more

Keeping NSW litter-free

Keeping NSW litter-free

In July, KNSWB will be hosting its Litter Congress at the Kirribilli Club in Lavender Bay and Inside Waste (IW) caught up Keep Australia Beautiful chair Val Southam to find out more about what the organisation is doing to tackle the litter issue, and what the congress hopes to achieve.

IW: Do you think NSW will meet the government’s 40% reduction in litter target by 2020 and how? Read more

TWU: it's not about wage rates, it's about job security

TWU: it’s not about wage rates, it’s about job security

Following industrial action earlier this year, the TWU and the Central Coast Council have engaged in negotiations in a bid to protect local drivers and offer long-term employment certainty during the transition to the new contract, which has been slated to commence in February next year. The result is a number of entitlements and employment terms included in the tender documents aimed at protecting local workers (more here). Read more

Legal Eagle: A licence holder's rights and responsibilities - recent prosecution in the Land and Environment Court

Legal Eagle: A licence holder’s rights and responsibilities – recent prosecution in the Land and Environment Court

Environment Protection Authority v Steggles Foods Mt Kuring-gai Pty Ltd [2017] NSWLEC 33

In this case, the NSW EPA commenced proceedings against Steggles Foods for contravening the following condition of its licence: “All plant and equipment installed at the premises or used in connection with the licensed activity… must be maintained in a proper and efficient condition”.

In providing details (particulars) of the contravention, the EPA stated that: “The defendant failed to maintain a refrigeration system, which was installed at 4-6 Mundowi Road, Mt Kuring-gai, in a condition in which it did not leak Ammonia.” Read more

Concerns raised over Central Coast tender

Concerns raised over Central Coast tender

Central Coast Council’s 10-year contract with Remondis will come to an end in January next year and Council told Inside Waste it had invited tenders but was unable to comment on ongoing the tender process. It did however, point to a media statement released in March, which said: “On 24 March 2017 the Transport Workers Union (TWU) and the Central Coast Council participated in confidential mediation, at the request of the Minister for Local Government, the Hon Gabrielle Upton MP.  Read more

Strength in numbers

Strength in numbers

Thus, in October that year, Maitland City Council turned to its neighbours – Cessnock and Singleton – to discuss the viability of implementing a regional contract for the collection and processing of organics. It was quickly determined that a regional contract was indeed the only financially sustainable option for the three councils to deliver a kerbside organics collection and processing service to their communities. Read more

Waste 2017: Achieving better outcomes in new builds

Waste 2017: Achieving better outcomes in new builds

NSW EPA senior project officer Marcelle Psaila, who spoke at the conference, said the regulator has been working to achieve better outcomes in waste management planning, detailing some of its efforts particularly in new builds.

The NSW scene

NSW’s population is growing and it’s forecasted to hit 9.9 million by 2036 with the Sydney Metropolitan Area expected to grow from 4.6 million people to 6.4 million by that same year. Read more

Insights from inside the EPA: top five tips for managing your response to an investigation

Insights from inside the EPA: top five tips for managing your response to an investigation

I spent around 10 years advising the NSW EPA on compliance action and running major prosecutions in the waste industry. In that time, I saw some companies that managed the EPA exceptionally well and some that didn’t – often with very different outcomes. Now, when clients come to see me about problems they are having with a government regulator like the EPA, often the approach they have taken has been counterproductive. I’ll let you in on a secret. It often isn’t about what happened but how the relationship is managed after that point. Read more