Trevor Evans, the Federal Government’s Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management has officially opened the first meeting of the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation’s (APCO) Collective Action Group (CAG).
The team of 12 leading representatives from across the supply chain and government will be tasked with overseeing the progress of Australia’s 2025 National Packaging Targets.
The 2025 targets were launched by government and industry in 2018. The CAG’s role is to work with APCO to oversee the development of a systemic model for how Australia can deliver the 2025 targets. The primary task for the CAG in 2019 is to develop a white paper setting out the roadmap for all stakeholders and identifying the critical interventions required to successfully transition Australia to a circular economy for packaging.
The CAG brings together representatives from the resource recovery, community, government, packaging, retail and manufacturing sectors to tackle Australia’s packaging waste challenges. It includes organisations such as Coles, David Jones and Country Road Group, Nestle, Coca Cola Amatil, EY, Planet Ark, the Australian Council of Recycling, SUEZ, Visy, Pact Group, the Department of Environment and Science (QLD) and the Federal Government’s Department of the Environment and Energy.
Mr Evans told the CAG the Federal Government had endorsed the National Packaging Targets.
“We’ve provided $1.1 million to APCO to help drive the consumer education and awareness that we need to see as we go on this journey in relation to recycled packaging.
“At this year’s election, we put a package of measures valued at over $160 million together to support waste reduction and recycling in this country. That included, very importantly, $20 million on the table for product stewardship so that is to support the development of new industry led recycling schemes and another $20 million for research,” Mr Evans said.
He said noted that last year’s meeting of environment ministers agreed to a National Waste Policy that would set a new unified direction on waste and recycling.
“We’re going through the process of developing a strong national action plan and importantly that has to include appropriate funding, robust targets and milestones along the way.”
APCO CEO Brooke Donnelly said that the formation of the CAG is an exciting milestone in APCO’s work towards delivering the targets.
“It’s fantastic to bring together such a prestigious group of leaders for the task. The 2025 National Packaging Targets are some of the most ambitious and decisive environmental targets to be supported in Australia and their delivery requires collaboration from across industry,” Ms Donnelly said.
“We applaud all CAG participants and their leading organisations for stepping up as key players in the global movement to create sustainable packaging solutions that drive accountability, transparency and shared value for consumers, industry and government”.
Over the next 12 months, APCO will be delivering an extensive program of projects to drive the delivery of the 2025 National Packaging Targets. These will be facilitated by a team of APCO Working Groups, comprising nearly 100 participants from industry and government across Australia which will in turn provide analysis and resources to the overarching CAG.
The projects include comprehensive infrastructure mapping of the current waste and recycling system and a series of models for alternatives; a range of research and trials to better understand compostability, remote and regional waste collection partnerships, phasing out of single-use plastics and consumer education initiatives to ensure a consistent approach to resource recovery in the packaging streams.
CAG Members include:
- Jeff Maguire, Group Head of CDS Implementation and Packaging Sustainability, Coca-Cola Amatil
- Margaret Stuart, Head of Corporate and External Relations, Nestlé Oceania
- Raphael Geminder, Chairman at Pact Group Holdings
- Richard Macchiesi, General Manager – Insights and Innovation – Visy
- Fiona Baxter, Group Manager Responsible Sourcing, Coles
- Lok-Man Shu, Regional Environment Manager, David Jones and Country Road Group
- Louise Vickery, Assistant Secretary, Australian Government Department of Environment and Energy
- Kylie Hughes, Director Waste Policy and Legislation, Department of Environment and Science QLD
- Terence Jeyretnam, Partner, Climate Change & Sustainability, EY
- Paul Klymenko, CEO, Planet Ark
- Peter Shmigel, CEO, Australian Council of Recycling
- Justin Frank, Director, Marketing, Communications and Key Accounts, SUEZ Australia & New Zealand
- Anne Astin, Independent Director, APCO – Chair of CAG
- Brooke Donnelly, CEO, APCO – CAG Secretariat
- Helen Lewis, Professor, Institute for Sustainable Futures – CAG Secretariat