Regional town looks to waste industry for growth

A Western Australian town is lobbying the state government to become a hub for large-scale waste management developments.

ABC News reported the bid comes amid other towns in the state fighting against such projects, while the Shire of Dandaragan says it is open to such developments to raise money and create jobs in its community.

The town is planning to locate a regional refuse site at the Badgingarra Research Station, more than 200 kilometres north of Perth.

The shire leases the farm, about 162 hectares in size, which is used for local agricultural research projects and community cropping programs.

“Currently we have our partners the West Midlands Group doing local agricultural research here, we could establish a composting facility here,” Councillor Dahlia Richardson told ABC News.

“We could have more people living and working here, we have have lots of ideas, we just need the land.”

The scale of the development could also allow the community farm to process, store and recycle the household, commercial and industrial waste within the Wheatbelt region and Perth.

Shire of Dandaragan president Leslee Holmes told ABC News the community of Badgingarra is largely in favour of the plan that will create dozens during construct and ongoing local employment.

“The level of support is fantastic,” Ms Holmes said.

“Badgingarra like all small communities are looking for something to ensure the future of their town.

“They have a great deal of faith in this plan, they think it’s a wonderful idea and they trust us.

“They know that there will be jobs, and they know that we will turn part of this site into a best practice regional refuse site.”

Councillor Dahlia Richardson said the proposed regional refuse site would have great benefits to the community.

“We look at the proposal as an opportunity to expand our population and then local business and the school will benefit,” Councillor Richardson said.

“Badgingarra is a wonderful place to live, I want it to be wonderful well into the future… this plan will give us that future.”

The shire hopes to move ahead with the formal approval process as soon as possible if it proves successful.

“Like everyone, we are making new friends in the recently elected State Government, finding out who we can talk to, [and] hopefully impressing them with our ideas,” Ms Holmes said.

Ms Holmes said there have been some preliminary discussions with Labor parliamentary secretary Darren West and is hopeful of speaking with Minister MacTiernan soon.

“Personally I think the plan will appeal to government and our locals too.”

The shire is waiting for State Government to respond to their offer to buy the land.