EPA says it’s time for businesses to do some planning and checks before the holiday period.

EPA Gippsland Regional Manager Zac Dornom says a little planning now can save you from a big headache later.

“It’s about not leaving a mess for yourself to clean up when you get back in January, while preventing any accidents that could be much worse than that,” Mr Dornom said.

“You’re probably looking forward to a nice break, and the last thing you want is a fire, a leak or a spill dragging you away from the beach, family gathering or a good sleep, and damaging your business,” he said.

Under new environmental laws in place, all businesses must take all reasonable measures to minimise the risk and harm from pollution and waste.  This includes when preparing for any temporary closures.  

EPA’s tips for industry start with simple things:

Make sure any accumulated waste is secure or preferably sent for proper disposal 
Check that any chemicals and hazardous materials are stored safely 
Make sure liquids are surrounded by a bund that traps any leaks, and that the bunds are in good condition
Prevent any contaminated water from entering stormwater drains, when washing vehicles or equipment
In open air locations such as building sites, secure any loose materials and skip bins to prevent litter escape and unauthorised dumping
Check that any alarm systems are working, and that you have good plans in place for responding or can be remotely de-activate them to reduce nuisance noise.  
Ensure your emergency contacts and plans are up to date and in place for the holiday period

Just like the emergency services, EPA will be ready through the festive period to respond to reports of pollution, and a little prevention can make sure that report doesn’t involve your business.

“By being prepared, you reduce the chance of receiving a call from the emergency services right when you’re trying to relax. And if there is an incident, good planning and preparation can help to make sure it’s only a minor one,” Mr Dornom said.

There are many general and sector-specific compliance support guidance documents available on the website www.epa.vic.gov.au 


Members of the public can report pollution to Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) on the 24 hour EPA hotline, 1300 372 842 (1300 EPA VIC).

Reviewed 17 December 2021