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MAV supports e-waste deadline extension


By Jonathan Nally
Monday, 21 May, 2018


MAV supports e-waste deadline extension

In its latest newsletter, the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV) has welcomed the Victorian Government’s April announcement of a 12-month delay in the introduction of a new e-waste landfill ban.

The MAV notes that “by delaying introduction of the ban the Government provides state agencies, industry and local government with the opportunity to put in place the infrastructure, market conditions and community education that is needed to give the ban its best chance of success”.

In January this year, at which stage the landfill ban was supposed to begin on 1 July 2018, the MAV released a detailed Policy Impact Assessment (Word doc) document outlining its thoughts on e-waste recycling, landfill and policy issue, including the ban.

The MAV said in the Policy Impact Assessment that it “strongly believes the principle of product stewardship should underpin any e-waste landfill ban in Victoria”.

“Product stewardship approaches are preferable because they help ensure that most of the cost of e-waste recovery is borne by those importing, producing, selling and purchasing electronic goods, instead of by ratepayers more broadly. They also have the ability to drive industry to factor in end-of-life considerations into their product design.”

It went on to say, “Victorian councils already participate in a number of product stewardship schemes, including for televisions, computers and computer paraphernalia, batteries, mobile phones and printer cartridges.

“Councils have made clear that they would similarly support schemes for a broader array of e-waste, and they welcome and applaud the Victorian Government’s efforts to establish a product stewardship scheme for photovoltaic (PV) panels.”

The document had called on the Victorian Government to:

  • delay entry into force of the ban until the $15 million Sustainability Victoria infrastructure support program has been rolled out and all priority collection points have been upgraded to meet the relevant standards for safe handling and storage
  • allocate funding from the Sustainability Fund to support councils to provide additional collection points that are safe and readily accessible to the Victorian community, and compensate councils for any reasonable additional waste management costs borne by councils as a direct result of the ban for the first 24 months of the ban
  • work with retailers to establish collection points at outlets that sell electronic goods
  • increase the funding allocation for the education and information campaign for the ban to at least $3 million over three years, as per the cost benefit analysis, to enable implementation of a clear, consistent and effective campaign across Victoria
  • strengthen advocacy to the Australian Government to expand existing product stewardship schemes and establish new schemes so that the costs associated with recycling e-waste are borne by those producing, selling and purchasing the products.
     

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/Maksym Yemelyanov

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