According to ResourceRecovery.biz, the Commonwealth Government has commissioned a major assessment of Australia’s current and future hazardous waste infrastructure needs and capacity.
The study is to be undertaken by Blue Environment in association with Randell Environmental Consulting and ENVIRON Australia. It will involve developing scenarios for future quantities of hazardous waste and a simultaneous research and consultation program, encompassing industry and state governments.
The final phase will put these two elements together to work out areas where current infrastructure may be inadequate for the future, with the project running until early 2015.
Lead author of the study and director of Blue Environment, Dr Joe Pickin, said the report including the data collected will be published on the Commonwealth Department of the Environment website, as well as being shared with Geoscience Australia for updating their database of Australia’s waste-related infrastructure.
Pickin said the study will focus on all liquid and solid hazardous wastes, including manufacturing wastes, contaminated soils and asbestos.
An important aspect of the project is an assessment of capacity to deal with the persistent organic pollutants (POPs) that have been added to the Stockholm Convention since 2009.
Pickin also highlighted contaminated biosolids, of which large stockpiles exist, as another important element of the study. He noted that hazardous landfill capacity will be a key issue, particularly in Victoria and Tasmania.