The National Pollutant Inventory (NPI) was developed as a National Environment Protection Measure (NEPM) by the National Environment Protection Council (NEPC) and is a statutory instrument under the National Environment Protection Council Act (Australia) 1994. It was incorporated into Victorian law as the Industrial Waste Management Policy (National Pollutant Inventory) 1998.
The NPI tracks the magnitude of emissions to air, land and water and the amounts transported in waste of 93 substances. NPI is not a licensed activity and reporting is a separate requirement to any reporting that a licensed company may need to do. Companies are required to report to NPI if they exceed the threshold limits of listed substances, at a facility level. More information regarding the NPI thresholds and reporting process can be found in the NPI guide (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities).
Preparing an NPI report
Reporting companies are required to provide NPI reports to their state authorities. Companies whose facilities are located in Victoria should send all reporting information to EPA.
If your facility exceeds threshold usage levels, it is required to report annually on emissions and transfers of relevant substances. More details on the listed substances and their thresholds can be found in the NPI guide.
Companies that have more than one operating facility are required to report separately for each facility that reaches threshold levels for listed substances.
There are a number of ways that a facility can calculate their emissions and transfers in waste, which are described in detail in the NPI guide. The NPI website also has a range of emissions estimation technique (EET) manuals available for download for specific industry sectors. These manuals have been produced to assist industry personnel in calculating their emissions. You are not required to report if your facility does not have an ANZSIC code published on the NPI website.
Transfers are the transportation of NPI-listed substances contained in waste to a mandatory reporting transfer destination or a voluntary reporting transfer destination. For example, if waste is transported to a destination for containment or destruction, reporting is mandatory.
Transfers are included in the National Environment Protection (National Pollutant Inventory) Measure 1998 (NPI NEPM) as varied. If a substance threshold was reached, your facility is required to report on the relevant substance contained in the waste streams.
Submitting an NPI report
To report to the NPI, you are required to be registered to use the NPI online reporting system (ORS). To obtain access to this system you must first complete and submit an application for registration.
If you have technical or general questions relating to an emissions estimation technique manual, your industry association or the EPA's NPI team are a good initial source of information. Either of these groups can direct you to technical experts.
Further general information about the NPI can be found by accessing the NPI website.