The commencement of the new waste levy system on 1 August 2015 is the last tranche of the waste reforms that commenced on 1 November last year. A detailed analysis of all of the reforms is available here.

Key changes

  • A broader range of facilities will be captured. The thresholds for the processing and storage of waste have been lowered. More facilities will require an Environment Protection Licence (EPL) as 'scheduled waste facilities'. Operators of those new scheduled waste facilities will be 'new contributors' to the waste levy.
  • Operators will incur a levy liability on all waste received at a scheduled waste facility. Payment of that liability will only be triggered when certain events occur.
  • A new 'Authorised Amount' (AA) limit will be imposed on EPLs in addition to the existing limits. Breach of the AA will trigger payment of the levy liability.
  • All waste facilities that have a levy liability must install a weighbridge by 1 February 2016 although there are limited exceptions.

Key dates and obligations

Next Steps

We recommend that all owners and occupiers of facilities that accept, store, process and dispose of waste, review the new thresholds and levy requirements to ensure they understand how these requirements will apply to their facility and how to comply. This may need to include a broad review of compliance policies and systems as well as commercial contracts.

Our Norton Rose Fulbright team are recognised as leading advisers to the waste sector throughout Australia and act for international and domestic entities and all levels of Government in relation to the full spectrum of the waste generation, management and disposal chain. We would be delighted to assist you with specific advice on the relevance of the proposed changes to your business, including approval and licensing requirements and impacts on existing agreements.