Hendy Cowan

Hendy Cowan


    Government aids waste recycling [visual]

    31/08/2000 12:00 AM

    Western Australia's efforts to recycle waste water for industrial use have received a boost with the official opening of a new research facility at Murdoch University.

    The new Centre for Organic Waste Management - which will receive almost $500,000 over three years from the State Government under its Centres of Excellence Program - will conduct research into all aspects of organic waste treatment.

    Key areas include waste water treatment to enable water reuse in industrial processes and research into the impacts on groundwater of organic waste used as landfill.

    Opening the Centre today, Commerce and Trade Minister Hendy Cowan said the primary aim was to develop environmentally sustainable solutions for managing organic waste and its by-products.

    “Western Australia produces in excess of one million tonnes of organic waste each year and it is crucial that every effort is made to dispose of this waste effectively and, where possible, recycle it,” he said.

    “In addition to domestically generated waste, agriculture and industry generate organic waste and there is great potential to increase recycling in both these areas.

    “The high nutrient content of organic waste makes it valuable as a potential resource for agricultural and other land management practices and research to be undertaken at the Centre has the potential to enhance the fertility of our agricultural regions.”

    Mr Cowan said the funding support being provided by the State Government would enable the appointment of senior research personnel, the purchase of research equipment and the fit-out of dedicated laboratory space at Murdoch University.

    “It is essential that the Government helps put in place research infrastructure that will provide broad-based benefits to industry and the State. These can then be utilised on a collaborative basis by all parties,” he said.

    In the past financial year, the State Government has approved over $3.5 million in funding for six centres of excellence. This will be matched by projected contributions of up to $40 million from various universities and other non-profit research bodies, $8 million from industry, and $74 million from Commonwealth Government sources. In WA, 26 centres of excellence have now been funded.

    Media contact: Peter Jackson 9222-9595

    Deputy Premier Hendy Cowan unveils the opening plaque for the Centre for Organic Waste Management with executive chairman Professor Arthur McComb.

    Centre deputy director Dr Ralf Cord-Ruwisch shows Deputy Premier Hendy Cowan and Murdoch Vice-Chancellor Professor Steven Schwartz one of the new labs.