From: "Mary Jean O'Donnell" <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 30 Sep 2003 14:09:24 -0700
Mary Jean O'Donnell, Principal
MJ Waste Solutions
Box 57102-2480 East Hastings
Vancouver, BC V5K 5G6
Australia - Governance for Regional Sustainability: The Western Australia
WA administration launches sustainability strategy
In a special address to open the International Sustainability Conference
in Fremantle, Australia, the Premier Dr Geoff Gallop outlined his vision
of Governance for sustainability and took the opportunity to launch Hope
for the Future: State Sustainability Strategy for Western Australia.
The Premier spoke about the wide range of initiatives that the State
Government will be introducing to implement the Strategy, including the
enacting of the first Sustainability Act in Australian history.
Among the terrirory's plans to enhance our quality of life are:
* develop a Strategic Framework for Waste Management, including
detailed plans for each waste stream (including hazardous waste), towards
zero waste by 2020.
* demonstrate the Sustainability Scorecard approach to development
control to encourage thermal efficiency, solar orientation, accessible
design, affordable housing and other sustainable building practices in
new and renovated homes.
* support communities to fully participate in achieving a sustainable
Government will take an active role in stimulating the development of
markets for recycled materials through its own purchasing requirements as
outlined in Embracing sustainability in government agencies.
In order to implement strategic directions for waste, the Western
Australian Government has developed a model to achieve zero waste. This
has been designed to aid decision-making and illustrate the thinking
required to implement the waste management hierarchy.
The application of the model is built on a cycle of continual improvement
and will require the commitment and participation of all stakeholders to:
* prevent the generation of waste
* maximise recovery and recycling of resources from waste
* analyse the residual waste stream and make improvements to move
toward zero waste by 2020
The Waste 2020 Strategy identified the need to establish an effective
structure to coordinate the implementation of the toward zero waste
vision. The government established the Waste Management Board to undertake
The future direction of waste management as described by the 'zero waste'
model will utilise the waste management hierarchy as a decision support
tool and product life cycle management to help guide product design. Both
social and intergenerational equity issues need to be addressed by
ensuring all waste is managed in time and space as close to the point of
generation as possible.
Specific issues such as converting waste to energy, should only be
considered after all other alternate strategies, consistent with the waste
management hierarchy, have been considered.
The community is more aware of the negative impact wastes have on our
quality of life, especially since the Bellevue chemical fire in February
2001. As a result, technologies for treating and storing wastes and the
location of waste facilities have been of great concern to many in the
community, leading to demands for preventative strategies to minimise
wastes and particularly those that can enable the elimination of hazardous
wastes. The government has made a number of commitments over time that has
led to a policy of containing the nuclear industry with its hazardous wastes.
A Resource Recovery and Waste Avoidance Bill will be drafted containing
modern provisions for achieving world best practice in the sustainable
minimisation and management of waste and resource consumption. This Bill
will ensure a coordinated approach across the State to maximise the
recovery of waste resources, and will begin to establish requirements for
extended producer responsibility of materials and wastes.
There is a need for consumers and producers to become more responsible for
the life cycle of products and services. One key mechanism developing
overseas for closing the loop is through requirements to extend a
producer's responsibility beyond the point of sale of a product. This
means that a producer is responsible for their products throughout their
life cycle, which has led to advancements in design. A policy position
paper will be developed on the application of extended producer
responsibility in Western Australia.
At a national level a voluntary National Packaging Covenant has been
established to reduce the amount of packaging being consumed in Australia.
The Western Australian Government has prepared an Action Plan to implement
the Covenant and will introduce the necessary regulations under the
Environmental Protection Act 1986.
Summary of the sustainability strategy concerning waste & resources
Vision - Toward zero waste by 2020.
* manufacturing and other industrial processes are operated in a
sustainable manner that minimises the quantity of wastes produced
* products and services are designed and/or packaged to minimise waste
and facilitate re-use and resource recovery
* information and data on waste generation are continuously collected,
analysed and reported
* all wastes are segregated and sorted close to source in a manner
that optimises resource recovery for higher end-uses.
* hazardous components in goods and services are replaced to increase
resource recovery options
* comprehensive suites of treatment facilities are established which
maximise resource recovery
* residual waste streams are continuously assessed and actions taken
to enhance recovery
* a community that understands the impact of purchasing choices and
actively participates in waste reduction and recycling activities
* implementing the Waste 2020 Strategy
* establishing the Waste Management Board
* developing a whole of government procurement policy for waste paper
* conducting research on solid waste management through the waste levy
* conducting the Parliamentary Inquiry into the Bellevue Chemical Fire
and acting upon its recommendations, including initiating a comprehensive
review into hazardous waste management in Western Australia
* establishment of the National Packaging Covenant program and
* survey and review into hazardous waste generation
* Finalise the Strategic Framework for Waste Management to guide the
management of waste in Western Australia towards zero waste by 2020 and
liaise with stakeholders and the community on the implementation of the
* Recognise the success of those individuals, innovators, industries
and councils who are successfully implementing a Zero Waste Framework.
* Introduce and enact the Resource Recovery and Waste Avoidance Bill.
* Enact the Contaminated Sites Bill.
* Prepare detailed business plans to support and prioritise the
strategic activities to support the goal of moving towards zero waste by 2020.
* Encourage all government agencies to reduce consumption and waste by
undertaking a comprehensive audit of resource consumption and waste and
setting targets for reductions as part of their Sustainability Action Plans.
* Encourage the use of recycled products by all government agencies
through the Government's Sustainability Procurement Policy.
* Encourage recycling of paper, glass, plastics, metals and organic
waste using the Sustainability Code of Practice for government agencies.
* Work with local governments to expand the scope of their waste
management plans to be consistent with the Strategic Framework for Waste
Management, and support markets for recovered materials through the use
of the Sustainability Scorecard in development applications involving
construction and demolition waste.
* Examine how the landfill levy can better reflect environmental and
social costs of waste disposal.
* Set mandatory hazardous waste targets for industry and target
cleaner production programs towards industries producing hazardous waste
so that a plan can be created for zero hazardous waste by 2020.
* Develop policies and legislation to encourage or require producers
of hazardous and problematic wastes to share the responsibility for
managing and reducing these wastes until they are phased out by 2020.
* Actively engage the community to determine appropriate siting and
establishment of industrial/hazardous waste precincts for the
metropolitan region until such waste is phased out by 2020.
* Ensure appropriate regulations exist to effect the safe
transportation, storage and disposal of hazardous and controlled wastes
in the period leading to the phase out of such wastes.
* Develop a comprehensive and clear waste classification and recording
system for all wastes across Western Australia.
* Develop and report effective indicators to measure progress toward
zero waste for each sector of society, including industry, community and
Copies of the strategy document are available from WA's website at:
Be warned, the report is big; more than 8 MB. I can email you a copy if
your system can accommodate it.
With best wishes,
THIS INFORMATION COMES TO YOU FROM
THE RESOURCE RECOVERY FORUM
Resource Recovery Forum, 1st Floor, The British School
Otley Street. Skipton, North Yorkshire BD23 1EP. UK
Secretary: Kit Strange
Tel: +44 (0) 1756 709 808
Fax: +44 (0) 1756 709 801