Heads of EPA discuss national approaches

At a Waste Management Association of Australian (WMAA) NSW industry update earlier this month, NSW EPA director waste and resource recovery Steve Beaman said HEPA – an informal organisation – decided to form this waste working group as discussions within COAG tended to focus on issues such as container deposit schemes and plastic bag bans, and there is “a bit missing where there’s a need for regulatory policy and for the states to get together to harmonise.”

Beaman told attendees the working group would meet “fairly frequently” and as a start, would be principle-based although the intent is to get into the details “fairly quickly” Read more

Pushing for phosphate-free detergents in two years

A new report has found alarming levels of phosphates in 62% of the auto dishwasher tablets sold in Coles and Woolworths stores nationally over the last 12 months.

Back in 2010, Jon Dee – co-founder and managing director at DoSomething – launched a campaign to get laundry detergent manufacturers to voluntarily phase out the use of phosphates in laundry detergents, in both powders and liquids.

He was successful in this and as a result of the campaign 2.3 billion laundry detergents a year in Australia is now phosphate-free. Though the success wasn’t complete as he began to see some people “dragging the chain” in this space. Read more

Redback Technologies in NZ for Virtual Power Plant trial

Redback’s Smart Hybrid System will be used as part of a two-year solar and battery technology trial designed to support Wellingtonians in the event of a natural disaster.

The technology will allow residents to access energy from solar power generation and battery storage when the electricity grid is under pressure during peak times or is compromised due to outages.

Tim Latimer, director of sales for Oceania at Redback Technologies, says that Redback began talks with Contact Energy at the beginning of the year after Contact employees saw their product at a show. Read more

Legal Eagle: NSW Land and Environment Court sentencing judgement for contravention of EPL and POEO Act

Background

Mr Osman-Kerim was the sole-director of Sydney Drum Machinery Pty Ltd (Sydney Drum) and consequently, involved in the day-to-day management of the business. The business activities were conducted at St Marys and included the cleaning and reconditioning of intermediate bulk containers and drums, which were used as chemical containers by suppliers to store liquid products. Environment Protection Licence (EPL) No. 12893 was held by Sydney Drum and permitted container reconditioning and waste processing (non-thermal treatment) at the premises.

Contravention of EPL condition Read more

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

Driving the drone economy

Speaking exclusively to Inside Waste (IW)  Terra Drone founder and CEO Toru Tokushige, who will also be presenting at the 2017 World of Drones Congress at the end of August, detailed what the company has to offer and why its chosen Australia as its Asia Pacific base.

IW: Tell us more about Terra Drone – what sets the company and its equipment apart? Read more

Ban the bag and cash for trash: new waste reduction and recycling laws in Queensland

In recent years, bans on lightweight plastic bags have been implemented in South Australia, the Northern Territory, the Australian Capital Territory and Tasmania, while South Australia, New South Wales and Western Australia all have container deposit schemes.

Queensland Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection Steven Miles introduced the Waste Reduction and Recycling Amendment Bill 2017 into the Legislative Assembly on June 14, 2017, citing Queensland as having one of the lowest recycling rates in Australia. Read more

Batteries paving the path to a cleaner and greener future

Batteries paving the path to a cleaner and greener future

The report showed 87% of power generated in Australia comes from fossil fuels while just 13% is generated from renewables.

While there has been a greater effort to integrate renewables into the grid, there is huge potential to make both renewables and fossil fuel powered systems significantly more efficient.

To reduce the strain on the grid during peak power use periods – in the early evening and in the morning before standard work hours – utilities have started to explore the idea of energy storage in batteries as a means to balance the grid. Read more

Investing in sustainable energy - the case for power to gas

Investing in sustainable energy – the case for power to gas

Just cast your eye to Victoria where not only has the state government launched a $2 million program to support the development of EfW technologies, some regional councils are investigating the viability of EfW including the City of Bendigo, while the Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance and Hepburn Shire Council are in the midst of an EfW trial, and a business plan has been developed to expand this trial to 70 EfW, micropower stations across six regional shires. Then there’s Dial A Dump Industries’ proposal to build the $700 million The Next Generation facility in Eastern Creek, 35km west of Sydney. Read more