The threat of fire at waste and resource recovery facilities is very serious, and the Victorian Government is committed to reducing this risk. In August 2017, an interim Waste Management Policy (Resource Recovery Facilities) (WMP) (Victorian Government Gazette) was implemented placing requirements on sites that store combustible recyclable and waste materials (CRWM*). Compliance with the policy is mandatory and requires that CRWM is managed and stored in a manner that reduces risk to human health and the environment from fire.
* CRWM includes paper, cardboard, wood, plastic, rubber, textile, organic material, refuse derived fuel, specified electronic waste, metals, and other combustible material which is considered waste.
To support compliance with the policy, Management and storage of combustible recyclable and waste materials - guideline (publication 1667) has been developed by EPA, Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) and Country Fire Authority (CFA) in consultation with a wide range of government and waste industry representatives. This is a helpful guide for small to medium sized businesses to assist with introducing risk management into the workplace.
The interim policy expires in August 2018. The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) is examining longer-term policy and regulatory responses to reduce the risks of stockpiling, and ensure that Victoria’s waste and resource recovery system remains robust and effective.
DELWP and EPA are working together to consult with industry and the community on the development of an ongoing Waste Management Policy (Combustible Recyclable and Waste Material) and review of the existing guideline.
Consultation now open
After researching and consulting on various approaches, a proposed policy has been developed. This is supported by an assessment of the policy's impacts on Victoria's community and industry. Public consultation on the draft policy, the supporting policy impact assessment and the existing guideline is open until 1 August 2018.
During this time, various engagement and communications activities will be held to ensure all stakeholders understand the proposed policy and have an opportunity to comment.
A copy of the documents and other key information is available on the Engage Victoria website. Use this website to tell us what you think about the documents, and whether you think changes are needed in the policy and the guideline. Industry and government stakeholders can learn more about consultation sessions by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org