Conference Day Two

Conference Day Two – Thursday 28 June


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Learning sessions

08:30 | Welcome coffee

08:50 | Opening remarks from the Chair

Brooke Donnelly, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation

09:00 | OPENING KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Exploring the opportunities and challenges of waste recovery, recycling and prevention in Australia

  • Identifying the need to improve resource recovery on a national scale
  • Understanding the current waste recovery and recycling sector, and the need to forge new markets
  • Presenting the tools to develop an integrated statewide waste and resource recovery system on a state level

Shannon Smyth, Acting Director Resource Recovery, Sustainability Victoria

09:30 | CASE STUDY: Waste-to-energy - an essential part of strategic waste management – learn more from the Kwinana Waste-to-Energy facility

  • Understanding the responsibility of local governments in waste recovery and prevention
  • Identifying the challenges faced by municipalities to shift from end-of-pipe solutions
  • Questioning how local waste management systems can be designed to encourage waste reduction in households

Carol AdamsMayor, City of Kwinana


09:45 | The perspective of local councils regarding waste recovery and prevention

  • Exploring the expected outcomes of a waste-to-energy facility for local councils
  • Identifying the challenges faced to implement such facility in regard to the financial investment, regulations, public opinion and infrastructures
  • Understanding the role of waste-to-energy in sustainable waste management
  • Highlighting the opportunities and the disadvantages of such facilities on a microlevel 

Darrell MonteiroManager Environmental Health, City of Kwinana

10:00 | CASE STUDY: From Switzerland to Taronga - going beyond standard resource recovery strategies

  • Understanding waste management and resource recovery strategies in Switzerland
  • How can Australia learn from Switzerland and implement better waste strategies
  • Identifying the challenges and constraints around resource recovery and waste minimization in large facilities such as Taronga
  • Highlighting the importance of partnering with key stakeholders to deliver positive outcomes

Anne Karin KehlhoferManager, Environmental Sustainability, Taronga Conservation Society Australia

10:30 | Morning Tea


11:00 | Food waste – largest stream, biggest impact, greatest opportunities

  • Identifying the benefits of reducing the quantity of organics going to landfills
  • Learning about the NSW Government’s $100 million waste levy investment into organics recovery and its consequences
  • Exploring the strategies to deviate waste from landfill from educating for avoidance to supporting new markets

Sian McGhieSenior Project Manager Local Government, NSW Environment Protection Authority

11:30 | CASE STUDY: Turning organic waste into energy at Sydney Water

  • Exploring how food waste and sewage sludge can help reduce the plant's power bill
  • Highlighting the power of business cooperation in recovering organic waste
  • Identifying the challenges faced by Sydney Water during and after the process
  • Capturing the strong return on investment of such a strategic facility

Philip WoodsEnergy Manager, Sydney Water

12:00 | CASE STUDY: How Richgro Managing produces energy and much more by closing the loop on organics recycling through the use of Anaerobic Digestion

  • The innovative approach of Richgro Bioenergy Plant
  • Identifying the business strategy behind the company’s waste management practices
  • Getting every last penny out of organic waste by producing biofertilizer, electricity and heat
  • Exploring the challenges and opportunities of the plant before and after development

Tim RichardsOperations Director, Richgro Garden Products

12:30 | PANEL DISCUSSION: What factors should you consider when deciding whether or not to jump into waste-to-energy?

  • Why is waste-to-energy controversial?
  • How efficient are waste-to-energy plants?
  • What are the limitations of these strategies?


Brooke Donnelly, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation


Darrell Monteiro, Manager Environmental Health, City of Kwinana
Nick Florin, Research Director, Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney
Ron Wainberg, Technical Director, MRA Consulting Group

13:10 | Networking lunch


14:10 | Reimagining Recycling in Australia to increase its productivity

  • Detailing contemporary Australian recycling and future trends
  • Shifting from supply-based recycling to demand-based recycling
  • Identifying the barriers and drivers, and learning how to best address them
  • Developing the political, social and economic trade-offs needed to stimulate recycle

Peter ShmigelChief Executive Officer, Australian Council of Recycling

14:30 | Pilots and collaborators – taking the ‘squiggle’ out of developing recycling solutions

  • Learning how to implement concrete and effective recycling solutions in organisations
  • Understanding the importance of collaboration between industries, organisations and governments in developing recycle plans
  • Learning how to take advantage of the current situation and maximise the chance of success
  • Exploring the multiple possibilities of PVC recycling in Australia

Helen Millicer, Recycling Projects Manager, Vinyl Council of Australia

14:50 | How can we stimulate correct recycling behaviour in Australia

  • Capturing the importance of changing consumption habits and waste practices in households and businesses
  • Debating the complexity of modifying habits society-wide and stimulating a shift toward a sustainable future
  • Highlighting the strategies governments and organisations can implement to change recycling behaviour
  • Understanding that recycling behaviour can also be changed in organisations and highlighting the benefits for doing so

Jenni Downes, Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney

15:10 | Q&A SESSION

Peter ShmigelChief Executive Officer, Australian Council of Recycling

Helen Millicer, Recycling Projects Manager, Vinyl Council of Australia

Jenni DownesInstitute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney

15:40 | Afternoon tea


16:10 | CASE STUDY: How to operate a successful business based on recycled materials

  • Understanding how Dresden associates sustainability and prolific business practices
  • Optimising plastic waste to create new opportunities
  • Learning how to chase plastic waste in the production process as well as in the external environment
  • Identifying the key elements needed to export Dresden’s strategy to other companies and sectors

Jason McDermottCo-founder, Dresden Optics

16:40 | PANEL DISCUSSION: What is the future of the recycling industry in Australia? 

  • Defining where Australia is going with its current recycling practices
  • Understanding the benefits of stimulating the recycling industry
  • Identifying where the country should aim to be in few years
  • Learning what can be done to stimulate change

Panel Moderator:

Kate HarrisChief Executive Officer, Good Environmental Choice Australia


Jason McDermott, Co-founder, Dresden Optics

Jenni Downes, Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney

Sandor G. Lukacs de PerenyPHD Candidate, University of New South Wales

17:20 | Closing remarks from the chair

17:30 | End of Day Two and close of conference

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Waste Strategy Summit 2018