Western Australia’s environment received a boost today with the launch of the Western Australian Cleaner Production Statement, providing A Vision of a Better Future for Western Australia, by Environment Minister Cheryl Edwardes.
The statement is the culmination of more than 12 months’ work by the Western Australian Sustainable Industry Group and aims to help WA business - in particular small to medium size enterprises - to improve environmental and financial performance.
The Sustainable Industry Group is convened by Professor Rene Van Berkel from the Centre of Excellence in Cleaner Production at Curtin University and comprises more than 100 professionals from 62 WA organisations.
The goal of Cleaner Production is to increase resource efficiency and reduce waste generation and emissions in the production, distribution and use of goods and services.
Cleaner Production also gives industries an opportunity to become more efficient and competitive by reducing their consumption of materials, energy, toxic substances and water.
“Cleaner Production is increasingly recognised around the world as a practical and effective way for organisations to save money while improving their environmental performance,” Mrs Edwardes said.
“Research for the statement found that large international companies have taken the lead in implementing Cleaner Production.
“Small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) have been slower to adopt Cleaner Production principles, in part because they lack the resources and expertise to investigate best environmental practice in their industry.”
The statement calls on Government, private industry, educational institutions and consumers to promote Cleaner Production as part of their regular activities.
“For example, private industry could integrate Cleaner Production into management strategies, assess current processes and products and implement appropriate changes, evaluate alternative technologies and provide appropriate training for staff,” Mrs Edwardes said.
“The State Government supports Cleaner Production and financial assistance for appropriate strategies is available through application to the Waste Management and Recycling Fund, administered by the Department of Environmental Protection.”
Companies can apply for up to 50 per cent of the cost of a Cleaner Production Assessment, up to a maximum value of $10,000.
It supports information and education programs by providing industry associations, local government, education and other groups with 50 per cent of project costs up to $25,000.
The Steering Committee of the Sustainable Industry Group will prepare an annual report on achievements towards the realisation of the Cleaner Production Statement.
Media contact: Steve Manchee on 9421 7777