Australian Paper is known as the only manufacturing company of packaging papers in the country. And they are proposing the Waste-to-Energy Project to help save the planet Earth.
The idea is all rubbish collected from south-east suburbs of Melbourne will be used to power the biggest paper mill in Australia – the Maryvale Mill. They also estimate that the said project can generate 225 megawatts of power by burning 650,000 tonnes of waste every year.
Australian Paper’s Communications and General Manager Craig Dunn said, “Our proposal is for modern energy from the waste facility using low emissions technology”. He also ensured that the process is safe and strictly compliant with the standards of the European Union.
Benefits of “Waste-to-Energy” Project
- It will keep more waste out of the landfill
The project will give an opportunity to make use of waste and extract value from it instead of disposing it to landfill. It’ll help to manage the landfill shortages.
- It will add a reliable source of energy
It’s possible to achieve 0% waste but, it’s not that easy to happen. As population increases, Victoria’s waste is continuously increasing too. By burning 650,000 tonnes of this waste, thousands and even hundreds of homes can be lit up.
- It can reduce greenhouse gas emissions
The two-thirds of waste around the state will be recovered to recycle and reuse while others will be sent to landfill. This practice will help fight climate change. It will also lessen the use of fossil fuel.
- It will reduce the use of natural gas
Maryvale mill is the biggest industrial consumer of natural gas for power. It will lessen the use of natural gas by 60%.
- It will open more job opportunities
The development of Waste-to-Energy Project at Maryvale Mill will support more than 1,600 jobs during the construction phase. In addition to this, more than 440 direct and indirect jobs are ongoing.
What does the community say?
Based on the Victorian Department of Health’s Regional Health Status Profiles report, resident’s life expectancy around Lathrobe Valley is four years shorter than other parts of Victoria. And it’s because of the brown-coal power generation which has been operating for decades.
Mr. Ian Needham, the executive officer of Lathrobe Valley Health Assembly, said: “The community wanted assurances the project would have no negative health impacts”. Victorian people want a long-term assurance based on investigation and research of professionals. People’s health must not sacrifice for any kind of projects.
Though it has a lot of benefits, the said project is still on the approval process. Every part must be weighed in to identify if it’s really worth the money and time.