Waste Strategy Taskforce tackles climate change
  • Thursday 12 March 2009

The newly convened Sunshine Coast Waste Strategy Taskforce has hit the ground running with initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and lower the $2 million cost of carbon trading.

The taskforce comprises waste industry and ratepayer representatives, local waste experts and community recyclers. The group will provide advice, consult with the public, and develop a draft waste strategy by the end of July 09.

Environment Portfolio holder Cr Keryn Jones said that around 65% of council’s greenhouse gas is generated from waste, and with the Federal Government’s new carbon trading scheme in place, the development of a waste management strategy is imperative.

“We have just met for the first time as a group and I am confident, that with the high calibre membership and ideas already floated, we will have a watertight strategy in place by July 09,” Cr Jones said.

“The Taskforce is keen to utilise an old council pine plantation, adjacent to the new Caloundra industrial estate. This parcel of land, already zoned for waste management, is perfect for operations such as composting, concrete crushing and maybe emerging industries like bio-char production.

“The site provides great access to transport networks, is central to the major development nodes of Sippy Downs and Caloundra South, and most importantly, can capitalise on any synergies with the adjacent industrial estate.

“The idea to capture the methane from Caloundra, Nambour and Noosa landfills and possibly to generate “green” energy as well, is certainly a budget initiative that I will be supporting.

“The Taskforce is also prioritising local economic development, everything from new industries utilising recycled resources, to replacing expensive fertilisers with compost. Utilising the resources from waste is simply better efficiency and can help the Coast become more competitive.

“We also recognise that our community-based thrift shops are unsung waste management heroes. They provide cheaper goods in hard economic times and keep waste out of landfill. The Taskforce will be looking at how to expand their benefits to the Coast,” Cr Jones said.

The taskforce will meet regularly to work through these and other initiatives while drafting in support from council to provide additional information. Sunshine Coast Council CEO, John Knaggs will seek funds to conduct a technology review to determine world’s best practice and, an audit/review of all existing waste disposal facilities on the Coast.