New NSW energy from waste regulation in place

energy from waste regulation

Communities and industry in New South Wales have certainty around acceptable locations for energy from waste with the new energy from waste regulation in place from July 8.

The Protection of the Environment Operations (General) Amendment (Thermal Energy from Waste) Regulation 2022 puts into law the Government’s Energy from Waste Infrastructure Plan to strategically locate energy from waste in four designated locations in NSW to maximise efficiencies in infrastructure, waste management, innovation and energy recovery.

All proposed energy from waste facilities must also adhere to strict air quality controls, and meet and exceed world best practice air quality standards as set out in the Energy from Waste Policy Statement.

The four designated locations are West Lithgow Precinct, Parkes Activation Precinct, Richmond Valley Regional Jobs Precinct, and Southern Goulburn-Mulwaree Precinct.

Outside of the four precincts the thermal treatment of waste is prohibited with some limited exceptions including where an activity has been specifically excluded from the definition of ‘thermal treatment’ (such as autoclaving, thermal treatment of biosolids and thermal treatment of waste plastic for genuine plastic recycling).

Exceptions can also apply if a facility was lawfully established and operating before the regulation commenced on 8 July 2022, or if using waste would replace a less environmentally sound fuel being used to power existing industrial or manufacturing processes on site.

All energy from waste proposals, regardless of location, are still required to comply with environmental and planning laws, including the Energy from Waste Policy Statement.

A copy of the new Regulation, and the exempt area maps are available on the EPA website:

Related stories:

NSW releases energy from waste plan

Maryvale EfW project secures $48.2m grant


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