The Board of the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded its assessment of a proposal by Dulverton Waste Management for an upgrade to its composting facility at Railton in the Latrobe municipality to an in-vessel composting facility, the first of its kind in Tasmania. The proposal was referred to the Board in December 2021.
The proposal involves decommissioning the current open windrow composting facility and constructing and operating an in-vessel composting facility, in which composting operations are contained within a building and odorous emissions are captured and treated through an air treatment system. Similarly, all effluent is captured and reused within the composting process. The current production limit will remain in place at 25,000 tonnes per year of compost produced.
The Chair of the EPA Board, Mr Andrew Paul, said that the Board concluded the proposed development can be managed in an environmentally sustainable and acceptable manner, with certain conditions. The Board requires these conditions to be included in any permit subsequently granted by the Latrobe Council.
“Various environmental issues were considered by the Board in its assessment, particularly odour emissions. The proposed facility is new technology in Tasmania and aligns with current Best Practice Environmental Management for composting to help reduce the impact of odours on the local amenity. Given this is untested technology in Tasmania, a detailed suite of conditions has been imposed to confirm that the expected reductions in odour emission from the site are realised by the new facility. These conditions include requirements such as the regular inspection and maintenance of odour treatment technology such as the biofilters, and air emission sampling and air dispersion modelling to determine whether expected performance of the facility is being achieved, to ensure that nuisance due to odours does not occur.", Mr Paul said.
No representations were received in relation to the permit application. Public consultation was open for 28 days from 17 August 2022.
The proposal was considered by the Board in the context of the sustainable development objectives of the Resource Management and Planning System of Tasmania (RMPS), and in the context of the objectives of the Environmental Management and Pollution Control System (EMPCS) established by the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 (EMPCA).
The functions of the Board are to administer and enforce the provisions of EMPCA, to further the RMPS and EMPCS objectives and, in particular, to use its best endeavours to protect the environment of Tasmania.
The Board undertook the assessment of the proposal in accordance with the Environmental Impact Assessment Principles defined in Section 74 of the Act. The Board's environmental assessment report, including the environmental conditions, has been issued to the applicant and Latrobe Council.
The decision in relation to Dulverton Waste Management can be viewed on this website