From the Chair and CEO
In January, we welcomed the Hon Gabrielle Upton as the new Minister for the Environment, Minister for Local Government and Minister for Heritage. Minister Upton is the Member for Vaucluse. In this edition we cover Minister Upton’s launch of the Hey Tosser! Autumn campaign, including the launch of 40 GPS-tracked bottles across the state’s waterways, to raise awareness of litter impacts.
March marked 25 years since the establishment of the NSW EPA and five years since we were re-established as an independent agency in our current role. Over those years we have seen some significant improvements to the environment and human health as a direct result of our activities and our partnerships with many of you. We look forward to working together with you for another 25 years and beyond.
I’m sure you’re aware that the EPA is working on delivering the NSW Container Deposit Scheme – a major game changer in reducing litter across the state. Following requests from environment groups and industry bodies, the CDS implementation date has been extended by five months, and will progressively roll out to locations from 1 December. This will help ensure the program is world-leading from day one and will operate smoothly for consumers and industry.
A big thanks to those of you who participated in our survey of stakeholders in December last year. The insights you provided are of great value to the EPA and help us to continue to be an effective leader, partner and protector for the NSW community and the environment. I will share these insights in the next edition of the newsletter.
In April the EPA attended the National PFAS Summit in Melbourne. The Summit provided a timely opportunity to share our experiences regulating this emerging contaminant with our interstate and overseas colleagues.
You can also read about the work we have been undertaking with Southwest Sydney Councils to combat contaminated “free” land fill being offered to unsuspecting residents across the region.
Also covered is the work we’ve done to impose a legally binding pollution reduction program to protect the Wollangambe River adjacent the Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.
Our team on the North Coast has been busy working with partners on the Pacific Highway Upgrade to reuse tree roots and logs for stream bank rehabilitation.
Continuing on the theme of partnerships, I’m pleased to let you know that we are working closely with the Greater Sydney Commission on improving environmental outcomes through better planning across Sydney. In this edition we profile Greater Sydney Commission Environment Commissioner Rod Simpson.
We also welcome our new Director Hazardous Materials, Chemicals and Radiation Asela Atapattu. We’ve recently expanded the EPA’s online licensing system eConnect to make it easier for radiation equipment professionals across NSW to apply for their radiation licences.
Finally, I encourage you to fill out our EPA Connect Newsletter Survey so we can improve how we provide you with updates on our work across NSW. In between editions you can stay up to date by following us on our Twitter handle @EPA_NSW.