Ipswich planning changes a 'show stopper', industry says

A SPECIAL measure impacting on the development of dumps in Ipswich has been labelled a "show stopper" by the waste industry.

The head of Queensland's waste industry group Rick Ralph said there was $150m worth of investment in Ipswich "ready to go" but the introduction of a new planning framework, called a Temporary Local Planning Instrument, had discouraged operators.

The State Government disagreed, saying its measure did not stop waste operators putting proposals forward to be approved, "provided impacts could be appropriately controlled".

The comments come as major waste operator Cleanaway prepares to lodge a development application to "rehabilitate and redesign" its Swanbank facility.

A Temporary Local Planning Instrument was introduced by the State Government in April, in response to community uproar over separate plans from BMI Group to establish a new landfill at New Chum within close proximity to homes.

The Instrument introduced a 750m buffer zone around industrial activities in the Swanbank and New Chum areas.

The instrument does not support the establishment of new open air compost manufacturing, or the expansion of existing facilities.

Mr Ralph, Waste Resource Industry Queensland president, said existing operators had plans to enclose activities, and limit any nuisance to nearby residents - for example - but those plans were prevented by the Instrument.

"The industry wants to invest in Ipswich, create jobs and keep facilities up-to-date with best practice standards," Mr Ralph said.

"But this Temporary Local Planning Instrument is a show stopper, as far as industry is concerned."

A spokesperson for the Department State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning said industry concerns had been raised directly with the government, and were being considered.

"The TLPI requires proponents of waste and recycling activities to take into account the potential on-site and off-site impacts of the activity and to appropriately manage these," the spokesperson said.

"Queensland's performance-based planning system does not stop applicants putting forward applications, such as waste management activities, provided impacts can be appropriately controlled.

"The department is continuing to work with the Ipswich City Council to provide advice and guidance to potential proponents of waste activities.

"This includes undertaking pre-lodgement meetings with potential applicants to discuss their proposed development and to offer assessment advice.

"Waste Resource Industry Queensland has met with the department to raise this and other matters relating to the TLPI.

"The department is currently examining the issues raised by WRIQ and other parties."