The fourth meeting of the Waste Management Association of Australia (WMAA) Board for 2018 was held via teleconference in early September. Continuing the theme for 2018, there was much to discuss in terms of the Association’s interaction with internal and external stakeholders, in helping to lead the discussion towards more sustainable settings for our sector, and the advancement of circular economy principles.
The CEO continues a very busy agenda of representing the interests of our broad sector to the increasing number of stakeholders that are recognising the importance of ‘what we do’. This included meeting with former Federal Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg on Monday, 27 August 2018 (before the leadership spill on Tuesday!). Discussions centred on clarifying the proximity principle, common direction for the National Waste Strategy, market development, advocating government procurement and strengthening extended producer responsibility. The Director General was present at the meeting and WMAA CEO is continuing to follow up with the Director General and other key Departmental staff for continuity. The CEO is aiming to meet with the new Environment Minister, Melissa Price, in the coming weeks.
The Draft National Waste Strategy was made publicly available for consultation on Friday, 7 September 2018. The WMAA National Office sought submissions from WMAA members through a Survey Monkey survey over two weeks till Friday, 21 September 2018. The WMAA National Office is currently collating and synthesizing submissions and will send a draft submission to the State Branches for review.
The South Australian budget has revealed a $4.5 million cut from waste reform. The CEO will be meeting with the SA Environment Minister in coming months and will discuss the budget alongside other relevant issues to SA, including organics and EfW.
Media attention in the industry has tapered off somewhat, and the WMAA Board agreed to take a breath and think about future responses. The WMAA National Office will commence work on framing key discussions around upcoming elections.
The Board noted the CEO’s written report highlighting WMAA’s healthy financial position, forthcoming events, and growth in membership – now exceeding 2,000 members, which is a great outcome for the association, and a clear sign that more and more groups are realising the value of working together to help improve the Australian settings for everyone in this sector.
Following the decision by the Board on Wednesday, 25 July 2018 to progress the Association’s name change, the WMAA National Office conducted a survey of members in relation to the proposed logos for the Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association of Australia.
The most popular logo design and acronym was WMRR. The Board has resolved to progress with the WMRR logo design and acronym concept. The Board resolved to proceed with the name change for the Association. This will occur prior to the end of 2018, with a special AGM to be scheduled at WasteSA, in order that we commence 2019 renewals with new branding and our new name.
The VIC, WA, and NSW State Branches have discussed the development of a new remanufacturing and resource recovery working group, acknowledging a gap to date in WMAA’s current working groups that focused on these two key areas. The WMAA National Office will develop the terms of reference, and would love expressions of interest to be part of this integral working group.
The next meeting of the WMAA Board will occur on Wednesday, 14 November 2018 in South Australia, the same day as the Special AGM to adopt the new Association name!