Landfills in the Clayton South, Clarinda and Dingley Village area.
EPA is working hard to ensure landfill operators are addressing the causes of odour issues in the area. We receive pollution reports relating to odour from the local community, and regularly inspect landfills and meet with landfill operators.
The majority of landfills in the Clayton-Dingley region have stopped accepting waste. Victory and Fraser Road landfills are accepting waste, but are estimated to close at the end 2016 and middle of 2017, respectively.
The closed sites are in the process of complying with Pollution Abatement Notices (PANs), which require operators to develop plans for the long term management of leachate, gas management, and final rehabilitation of their site. Once these plans are verified by an independent auditor and therefore fulfil the requirements in the PANs, the closed sites will be issued with a final Post Closure Pollution Abatement Notice (PC PAN) which details the specific ongoing monitoring and aftercare requirements. Once issued, the closed sites will then have their licence revoked meaning they can no longer accept any waste.
What does this mean for odour?
As waste is no longer accepted at closed sites, we expect odour to decrease.
When remedial works take place, however, there may be short term odour impacts. Under the requirements of the PC PAN, sites may be required to install additional gas bores. During the installation of these bores, it may be necessary to turn off gas extraction systems. As a result of this, it is possible that some landfill gas may be emitted, potentially causing some short term odour.
It is important to continue to report odour to EPA, as the data assists us to profile any odour issues in the area, and informs the need for inspections.
Our work in regulating closed landfills
Ongoing environmental management of closed landfill sites is regulated by EPA through the use of a PC PAN as an ongoing regulatory tool.
The process of issuing a PC PAN commences with the closure of the landfill, when waste acceptance ceases. Once this has occurred, EPA requires the landfill owner to gather information and data on the management of the closed landfill, the development of rehabilitation plans, aftercare management and monitoring programs. A hydrogeological assessment is also required. Following the completion of these plans and documents, PC PANs are issued that require the implementation of these specific plans and programs, along with regular reporting to EPA and the independent environmental auditing of the closed landfill at a frequency appropriate to the risks posed by the site.
Once a final PC PAN is issued, the landfill surrenders its licence and is no longer permitted to accept waste. For further details on the PC PAN process please refer to the Closed Landfill Guidelines.
Cold weather can cause an increase in odour reports, as rain reduces the effectiveness of gas extraction systems. Still conditions during the day, followed by cold, still nights, can also cause gas to become trapped and accumulate close to the ground instead of dissipating into the atmosphere.
Kingston City Council planning amendment
Kingston City Council proposed an amendment to the planning scheme in the area. Among other changes, Amendment C143 includes rezoning land outside the urban growth boundary north of Kingston and Heatherton Roads. EPA provided a submission to the planning panel on 20 March 2015 and the amendment was approved by the Minister for Planning on 15 October 2015.
The amendment is required to implement the recommendations of the Kingston Green Wedge Plan, April 2012 in relation to landfills, waste transfer and materials recycling. The Plan was adopted by Kingston City Council on 27 August 2012. The Plan acknowledges that the northern section of Kingston’s Green Wedge has been extensively mined for its sand resources and that a number of landfills located on these former mines are nearing the end of their lifecycle. Most landfills will cease waste operation by 2017. Post closure, these sites will require rehabilitation for a number of years.
See the Kingston City Council website for more information on current planning scheme amendments.
How you can get involved
Cleanaway operates several landfills in the Clayton area. It also has a 24/7 hotline service for concerned residents: 1800 213 753. All calls are registered with an operator and followed up with a return call within 24 hours.
Continue to report to EPA if you're affected by odour pollution. It is best to report via our 24/7 pollution hotline: 1300 372 842 (1300 EPA VIC).
EPA officers need to respond to odour reports as they are reported, so delaying your call, lodging it online or emailing us may not give officers the best chance of verifying your report.
The odour needs to be strong and persist for more than a few minutes and reporters should try to accurately describe the characteristics of the odour as well as weather conditions, particularly wind strength and direction. This information will give our officers the best chance of tracking an odour to its source.
If you would like to better understand what happens when a pollution report has been made to EPA view the publication How EPA responds to reports of pollution.
You can also subscribe to email updates on odour issues in the Clayton South, Clarinda and Dingley Village area.
Community events: Clayton and Dingley Waste Forum
Clayton and Dingley Waste forums are led by local waste operators with EPA present to update on our activities. The last forum was held on 20 April 2016.
See the Clayton and Dingley Waste Forum website for more information about community events.