The Victorian Government has launched a new $2 million program to support the development of waste to energy technologies, including anaerobic digestion and thermal treatment of waste.
The Waste to Energy Infrastructure Fund will boost sustainable energy production using organic and other materials and divert more waste from landfill.
As a major food producing and processing state, Victoria’s commercial and industrial sector produced more than 300,000 tonnes of food waste in 2014-15, but only 22 per cent of that was recycled.
Diverting commercial and industrial food waste from landfills means methane produced during decomposition is not released to the atmosphere where it is a major greenhouse gas.
Methane released to the atmosphere is 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide which traps heat and contributes to climate change.
The Waste to Energy Infrastructure Fund is designed for the waste management sector, councils, water authorities and businesses with proposals for new or upgraded projects that can be commissioned by 31 December 2019.
Expressions of interest close on 3 April 2017. A full application and detailed business case assessment process will follow for eligible project ideas.
Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio said waste to energy projects helped to reduce business costs, generating sustainable energy and reducing pressure on landfill.
“This program supports investment in renewable energy technologies that will help Victoria become a low carbon economy and reach our target of zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050,” Ms D’Ambrosio said.
“A variety of industrial and organic waste products can be used in waste to energy projects, however thanks to our agricultural base and food-culture, Victorian farms, food processors and commercial operations are well-placed to benefit from turning waste to energy.”