The global waste management market will add over $180 billion to its value in the next six years according to Allied Market Research (AMR) report.
WA’s East Rockingham Resource Recovery Facility has awarded waste management giant SUEZ a 20-year minimum contract as waste management partner.
SUEZ has partnered with a consortium of four companies running the facility – Hitachi Sozen INOVA (HZI), Tribe Infrastructure Group and New Energy Corporation, which won a series of competitive tenders for long-term contracts in the Perth metropolitan area before securing the East Rockingham partnership.
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The facility encompasses the design, construction, financing and operation of a greenfield waste-to-energy facility, 40 kilometres south of the Perth CBD.
The project aims to treat approximately 300,000 tonnes of waste per year from municipal, commercial and industrial sources including up to 30,000 tonnes per year of biosolids.
Energy generation targets are expected to reach 29 megawatts of renewable energy, enough to supply 36,000 homes following the start of construction slated for 2019.
SUEZ will provide 65,000 tonnes per year of commercial and industrial waste, maintenance services, removal of non-processable waste at its Bibra Lake and North Bannister facilities and the purchase of renewable electricity generated for its Perth operations.
This is the second waste-to-energy plant planned for the Rockingham-Kwinana industrial region.
Waste management company Bingo Industries has offered to sell its Banksmeadow processing plant to ease ACCC competition concerns regarding its $578 million purchase of Dial-a-Dump.
Australian waste-to-resource company Repurpose It have opted for Volvo Construction Equipment’s excavators and loaders for their Victorian plant.
The five new machines will assist the company’s loading and handling duties to assist in their recycling operation that sees large quantities of waste material re-used in the construction industry.
One Volvo EC250DL and two EC220DL units were chosen for excavation duties on the site, Repurpose It aims to input the tools on general earthmoving, screen feeding, sorting and stockpiling projects.
The company chose the L110F and L220H two-wheeled loaders for their loading work which will see hopper fed into their new recycling plant.
Repurpose It CEO George Hatzimanolis said that the company was happy to choose Volvo as the manufacturer alings with their energy efficiency commitments and engineering values.
“Our business is focused on reducing our carbon footprint and working towards a more sustainable future, as is Volvo,” Mr Hatzimanolis said.
“We were also attracted to the quality that comes with Volvo machines.”
The two EC220DL excavation units chosen for the site uses Volvo’s modern D6 diesel engine reporting 10% extra fuel efficiency over its competitors.
The Volvo machines were purchased from Dandenong’s CJD Equipment, Volvo’s exclusive Australian distribution partner.
Bega Valley’s Food Organics, Garden Organics (FOGO) service had a stellar 2018 earning a nod in the Australian Organic Recycling Association (AORA) awards.
The Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) has called for continued national leadership from the Federal Government to ensure waste management and resource recovery policies are consistent across all levels of government.
It follows the endorsement of the new National Waste Policy at the eighth Meeting of Environment Ministers in Canberra last week.
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After the Federal Government’s Department of the Environment and Energy issued a statement indicating a consensus was reached on a national action plan for the National Waste Policy, Environment Minister Melissa Price issued a statement last week claiming state and territory ministers “walked away from solid targets on Australia’s recycling and waste”.
“The Federal Government expected to formalise the targets, after months of negotiations and consultation and endorsement at state and federal official level,” Ms Price said in the statement.
“Instead the state and territory governments refused to endorse aspects of our National Waste Policy.
“This is an incredibly disappointing outcome for the nation that simply deprives Australia of a policy that would ensure we have a responsible and environmentally sensible approach to managing waste in the future.”
The minister went on to say that the Federal Government will continue to press forward with an action plan on reducing waste and increasing recycling.
ALGA President, Mayor David O’Loughlin attended the meeting and said there is more work to be done on the issue.
“The new policy may be full of good intentions and strong principles, but has as much backbone as you’ll find in the average plastic shopping bag,” Cr O’Loughlin said.
“Urgent action is needed as ministers themselves have acknowledged. Industry and communities need to see real on-ground action and there is a critical need for national leadership to maintain a unified approach.
“Dedicated and nationally-coordinated action on recycling will give industry the signal it needs to increase investment in sustainable resource recovery and support the nation’s move towards a circular economy,” he said.
Cr O’Loughlin said it is essential that all levels of government increase their procurement of goods and infrastructure that incorporate recycled materials, such as those used in road bases, to help reduce items entering the waste stream. He adds that state and territory governments need to take the necessary steps to help the recyclate industry sector go further.
“89 per cent of Australians have indicated that they want recycled content included in government procurement,” he said.
“There is more than $1 billion sitting in state waste levy funds that could be invested in industry innovation, pilot projects and financially supporting transitions from virgin product feedstock to recycled feedstock.
“There’s another $1 billion to be collected next year, but the meeting achieved no strong policy commitment, no agreement on concrete targets or timeframes, miniscule investment and little progress,” Cr O’Loughlin said.
Sawmill scraps and sawdust could soon be turned into renewable diesel and bitumen as a result of a $1.2 million feasibility study, funded by the Federal Government and Boral Limited.
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has agreed to grant Boral with $500,000 towards the study, with Boral providing the remainder.
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The study will trial a mechanical catalytic conversion technology, developed by Spanish-based Global Ecofuel Solutions SL, along with initial design works for the full-scale plant, exploration of the regulatory challenges and development of the business case.
Boral will explore the technical and financial viability of establishing a biorefinery using this technology near its Herons Creek hardwood sawmill, near Port Macquarie, NSW.
If successful, the proposed biorefinery would cost around $50 million and could convert up to 50,000 tonnes of waste sawmill residue produces each year into transport grade diesel and renewable bitumen.
Sawmill residue, which includes sawdust, remnant woodchips, shavings and offcuts, is currently used for lower value uses such as landscaping and boiler fuel.
Boral consumes a large amount of diesel and bitumen, using around 100 million litres of diesel a year to operate its business in Australia. The company estimates the volume of timber residues should create around 16 million litres of diesel and 8000 tonnes of bitumen.
Boral Building Products Executive General Manager Wayne Manners said if the study was successful, the diesel and bitumen produced at the potential new biorefinery could eventually account for up to 15 per cent of Boral’s annual needs.
“The application of this technology has the potential to transform the way we use low value hardwood sawmill residues into a resource that could be highly valuable, not just to Boral, but to the industry more generally,” he said.
ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said the project further shows that big businesses are increasingly moving towards renewable energy solutions.
“If this ground-breaking technology is successful, we hope to see a transition to similar biorefineries by other companies which have a waste stream in forestry or agriculture,” Mr Frischknecht said.
“The transport sector is a significant user of energy in Australia, with liquid fuels a key long-term energy source for heavy-vehicle road and air transport since they cannot readily be electrified.
“Bioenergy comprises a growing proportion of Australia’s energy mix, and this new technology could see residue from the production process be used to reduce Boral’s reliance on diesel and bitumen derived from fossil fuels,” he said.
Funding has been granted by the NSW Government to 10 organics collection projects to improve services that recycle food and garden waste into compost.
The grants will go towards the provision of kitchen caddies to hold food waste and make it easier for households to use the new food organics and garden organics collections.
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It also will help provide new garden waste kerbside collection services in two local government areas, and food and garden or food only collection services to households and business in seven council areas. This includes more than 100,000 households living in units within Sydney.
The $4.9 million in grant funding is shared across Armidale Regional Council, City of Sydney, Cumberland Council, Lockhart Shire Council, Penrith City Council, Randwick City Council, Upper Lachlan Shire and Wagga Wagga City.
NSW Environment Minister Gabrielle Upton said nearly half the landfill from household bins is food and garden waste (approximately 45 per cent).
“Simply putting all food and garden waste into green bins will dramatically reduce the amount of household garbage currently going to landfill,” she said.
“When food and garden waste goes into the green lid bin, it is properly processed and becomes a clean, green supply of compost, rather than rotting away in landfill and releasing methane into the atmosphere.
“For the first time, this program is also supporting food waste collections from businesses, with three projects that will collect around 1350 tonnes of business food waste a year,” Ms Upton said.
The start date to the Queensland waste levy has been pushed back to 1 July 2019 and will have a higher price per tonne.
Originally scheduled to start on 4 March 2019, the waste levy will now start at $75 per tonne with the date of levy increments proposed to be moved to 1 July each year.
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Consultation about the waste levy was undertaken by the Queensland Government over several months, which found that stakeholders and local governments have asked for a later start date.
It has also committed 70 per cent of revenue raised through the levy will go towards councils, the waste industry, scheme start-up and environmental programs.
Queensland Environment Minister Leeanne Enoch said delaying the start of the levy and changing the increment dates required the state government to adjust the waste levy rate to ensure it doesn’t fall behind other states.
“We are a consultative government and want to ensure the implementation of the waste levy is as smooth as possible for local councils, industry and for Queensland,” Ms Enoch said.
Ms Enoch also ensured Queenslanders would not have to pay more for their weekly council collections, as advanced payments would be provided to councils.
Local Government Association of Queensland CEO Greg Hallam said the state government has worked cooperatively with the association and is pleased to have reached a pragmatic outcome to ensure local governments are ready for the waste levy.
“A 1 July start date, even if that means a slightly higher rate, is exactly what we asked government for, and it’s good news for Queensland councils,” Mr Hallam said.
“The waste levy will help us advance toward a zero-waste future by 2035 and we thank the government for listening to our concerns about timing.”
Waste and Recycling Industry Queensland CEO Rick Ralph said he understood that more time for councils also means more time for industry to be ready and for the right regulatory structures to be put in place.
“The waste and recycling industry is getting on with the job of preparing for the waste levy and we’ll continue to work closely with the government to ensure the levy is implemented well,” Mr Ralph said.
The Queensland Government has also announced it will provide $6 million in extra funding to expand the Community Sustainability Action Grants Program to cover waste.
An additional $1 million will go towards a resource recovery Industries Roadmap and Action Plan and $6 million for a regional recycling transport assistance program.
Recycled construction and demolition (C&D) waste will be trialled as road base for use on the Kwinana Freeway widening project, WA.
The project is the first major road in WA that will use recycled materials as road base to boost the state’s recycling performance.
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The trial will take place between Russell Road and Roe Highway and will use about 25,000 tonnes of recycled C&D product.
Main Roads WA will work with the Waste Authority and the Department of Water and Environment Regulation (DWER) for the trial.
A new product testing scheme will aim to help C&D recyclers with the costs associated with meeting the appropriate specifications are free of contaminants and asbestos. An independent audit testing scheme aims to provide additional support.
The pilot aims to improve confidence in using recycled C&D products and supporting the state’s waste diversion target. Its findings will be used to establish the WA Government’s Road to Reuse program.
WA Environment Minister Stephen Dawson said the demonstration project is the beginning of a new practice for the government.
“It will demonstrate to local governments and industry that recycled content is usable and value for money, redressing the concerns from many years ago that effectively stopped any reuse of valuable construction and demolition materials,” Mr Dawson says.
“This partnership between DWER, the Waste Authority and Main Roads is a huge step forward for the reduction of construction and demolition waste in Western Australia.
“By using recycled construction and demolition products in projects across the state, we can help meet our landfill diversion targets and focus on recycling materials.”
WA Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said the interagency partnership is key to ensuring the ongoing use of recycled material in WA.
“Roads to Reuse establishes a strict testing regime to reduce the risk of contaminants to below allowable limits – protecting people and the environment,” she said.