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Tag Archives: Product Stewardship Act 2011

Next Level Product Stewardship Keynote Session

The relevance of product  stewardship is gaining momentum in policy circles and several industries, but how do we move beyond collection and recycling schemes to more effectively address life-cycle environmental priorities and stimulate new business opportunities?

Equilibrium’s John Gertsakis will be presenting one of the keynote sessions at the SA Waste & Resource Recovery Conference being held from the 28-29 October 2020 at the Adelaide Convention Centre. Hosted by the Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association of Australia, the the conference theme for 2020 is ‘outside the square, inside the circle’. John’s presentation will discuss why product stewardship needs to step-up and take more practical action back up the supply chain and across the product or material life-cycle.

Yesterday’s stewardship models, while important necessary, are proving inadequate in many cases and fail to genuinely embed key circular economy principles such as product durability, reuse, repair and alternative consumption models.

The Review of the Product Stewardship Act 2011 and the proposed Centre of Excellence, provide a timely launching point for John’s presentation to consider how Australia might accelerate the adoption of product and materials stewardship across diverse industries and sectors.

The transition to a circular economy will require smarter solutions that acknowledge the role of circular design in preventative measures rather than current scenarios focused on managing end-of-life products and materials.

John will discuss how stewardship can achieve greater gains by being life-cycle oriented and outcome focused.

The SA Waste & Resource Recovery Conference will feature a range of speakers  discussing product stewardship and provides a well-timed forum to explore how the Australia’s immense talent can ‘turbo-charge’ the successful uptake of next-level product stewardship policy and operations.

The full conference program is now available and can be viewed here.

For more information on John and the rest of the team, visit our About Us page.

Stewardship for solar panels attracts attention

As rooftop solar continues to boom, the future fate of photovoltaic panels is attracting greater scrutiny including active investigation of a national stewardship scheme to manage their recovery, refurbishment and recycling.

A recent story by ABC News investigated the growing pressure to ensure that end-of-life solar panels do not end up in landfill, especially given the valuable and scarce materials used to make them in the first instance.

The expected volumes of old and damaged panels is growing  with the ABC story reporting that 1,500 kilotons of obsolete PVs likely to reach end-of-life by 2050. This highlights the need to develop and implement national solutions, including potential stewardship programs that result in effective, safe and environmentally sound decommissioning and recycling of panels.

Sustainability Victoria is leading a national project to examine photovoltaic systems and assess possible options for stewardship programs to potentially manage the products at end-of-life.

The project is timely given the recent ban of ewaste to landfill in Victoria, which includes solar panels, inverters and battery storage.

Equilibrium was appointed by Sustainability Victoria to undertake an analysis and assess potential options for a national product stewardship approach.

Solar panels and associated products and equipment have been identified as a rapidly growing e-waste stream in future years.  For the Sustainability Victoria project “PV systems” have been defined to include panels and PV system accessories such as inverter equipment and energy storage systems.

For more information about Sustainability Victoria’s project on stewardship for PV systems look here.

More information

For more information contact Nick Harford at nick@equil.com.au or mobile 0419 993 234

 

ACOR Briefing Paper: Mandatory Product Stewardship Schemes

While all schemes can be improved, the current regulated take-back programs are producing good results, and there has been no demonstrable consumer concern about their cost.

Under the Product Stewardship Act 2011, schemes can be established to manage different products and materials in order to reduce their life-cycle impacts on the environment and on human health and safety.

Mandatory schemes involve enabling regulations to be made that would require some persons to take specified action in relation to products. Such requirements might include restricting the
manufacture or import of products, prohibiting products from containing particular substances, labelling and packaging requirements and other requirements relating to reusing, recycling,
recovering, treating or disposing of products.

A briefing paper prepared by Equilibrium for the Australian Council of Recycling (ACOR) identifies the likely costs of operating mandatory product stewardship schemes for tyres, mattresses and e-waste.

In considering the potential costs of a mandatory product stewardship scheme for various products, it is assumed that there will be development and set-up costs such as Regulatory Impact Statements, technical assessments and legal costs that will be borne by Government and industry participants / liable parties.

A copy of the briefing paper can be viewed on the ACOR website.

Product Stewardship at Equilibrium

Understanding the impacts and issues of a product or material across its life-cycle is often the first step towards creating smart stewardship solutions.

The production of manufactured goods brings diverse benefit and utility across all aspects of life. It serves our everyday habits, routines and lifestyles, often with great efficiency.

These products fuel economic activity, national prosperity and meet functional requirements, however they also consume materials, energy, water and a variety of other resources – some rare, some scarce and some potentially hazardous.

On the upside, the ability to create low impact, low-waste and restorative products and services in a circular economy is however straightforward, desirable and consistent with how responsible companies operate.

Enter Equilibrium advice, strategy and technical services

We specialise in all aspects of stewardship for products, materials and services. Equilibrium is much more than consulting and advice, as it covers the full range of activities necessary to design, develop, administer, implement and evaluate successful product solutions, schemes and programs.

Importantly, Equilibrium provides end-to-end stewardship services, from tailored programs, auditing methods and engagement strategies.

How we help our customers and partners

Whether it is a regulated scheme, a voluntary industry program, or an individual business service to customers, we have the capabilities and software to assist manufacturers, importers, retailers, associations and not-for-profits to develop and execute high performance stewardship outcomes.

Our services also have relevance to federal, state, territory and local governments, especially at the intersection of stakeholder engagement, consumer education and methodologies to address downstream supply chain assurance.

We implement a life-cycle or systems approach to stewardship and associated problem-solving in the resource recovery sector, specialising in materials and operational efficiency by drawing on extensive industry, environment and government experience.

Some of our customers and partners

Equilibrium provides a wide spectrum of stewardship-based services for industry and government connecting the environment, economy, policy and community in a shared responsibility model.

Our personnel have extensive experience in product stewardship – from hands-on industry roles establishing take-back programs to strategic level research and advice. Some of the stewardship projects and programs Equilibrium staff have worked on include:

> Paintback
> Child car safety seat take-back pilot
> National Television and Computer Recycling
> Mattress stewardship scheme development
> Tyre Stewardship Australia
> Australian Packaging Covenant
> FluoroCycle
> Oil container product stewardship scheme
> Australian Tyre Recyclers Association

Equilibrium’s focus is on working collaboratively with stakeholders and equipping them to implement stewardship solutions under their own Corporate Social Responsibility programs and directives.

Review of the Product Stewardship Act 2011

The current review of the Product Stewardship Act 2011, including the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme, is an important opportunity for manufactures, retailers, councils, social enterprises and industry associations, to help shape the next phase of stewardship activity in Australia.

The Equilibrium team has been deeply involved in many aspects of the Act’s creation, review and ongoing implementation. That means we can help interested organisations unlock the value and benefit of what the Act can offer organisations.

In short, we can assist with the preparation of submissions, run member workshops and advise on the relevance and implications of the Act, including the potential benefits with  securing voluntary accreditation.

We welcome and encourage you to make contact with us and talk about the review process and what it means for your company, enterprise, council or association.

Remember that the deadline for submissions under the review of the Product Stewardship Act is 29 June 2018.
More information

Contact Nicholas, Damien or John for more information about our services and solutions:

Nicholas Harford
Mobile: 0419 993 234 or nick@equil.com.au

Damien Wigley
Mobile: 0404 899 961 or damien@equil.com.au

John Gertsakis
Mobile: 0409 422 089 or john@equil.com.au

 

 

Review of the Product Stewardship Act

Passage of the Product Stewardship Act 2011 marks a step change in resource recovery and recycling in Australia. It has provided the platform and impetus for birth of a range of programs and schemes, some aligned to the Act and some not, that aim to reduce the environmental impacts of a wide range of products.

Equilibrium welcomes the news that the Department of the Environment and Energy will be undertaking a periodic review of the Product Stewardship Act 2011.

This is the first review of the Act since it commenced in 2011. The review presents an excellent opportunity for industry to have their say in how they Act operates and how it might be improved to be more responsive to emerging waste challenges.

To date the Product Stewardship Act has created an effective co-regulatory product stewardship scheme for televisions and computers (NCTRS), as well as giving voluntary accreditation to mobile phone, mercury-containing lamps, batteries, waste paint and tyre product stewardship schemes.

The periodic review will consider the effectiveness of the accreditation of voluntary product schemes and the Minister’s annual product list in supporting product stewardship outcomes. It will also review international and domestic experience in product stewardship to gain practical knowledge from international experience and help tailor that knowledge to local industries.

The Department of the Environment and Energy will actively seek input from industry, state, territory and local governments and the community to ensure that it continues to deliver the best outcomes for business and the environment.

The review will commence shortly and a final written report will be provided to the Minister for the Environment and Energy in early 2018. Further information on the review can be found here.