Note: CICCC would appreciate the cooperation of media staff in publicising the CICCC web site ( in any story that is run.

CICCC Update—19 July 2007 Meeting

EPA’s forward directions

At its meeting on 19 July 2007, Scott Maloney, EPA’s Manager for the West Metropolitan Region, made a wide-ranging and stimulating presentation to the Committee on EPA’s corporate focus and objectives.

The EPA is shifting from a primary focus on emission management (and being known as a ‘policeman’) to a focus that addresses the decline in ecosystems, the over consumption of resources, climate change, greenhouse and emission management, where EPA will be recognised as a leading influence in environmental stability.

New strategic directions will include increasing resource efficiency; reducing emissions impacts; enhancing the EPA’s reputation; and benefiting the economy.

Key external deliverables in EPA’s 2007/2008 business plan will include:

  • Licence reform, including corporate licences and annual performance statements;
  • Environment and Resource Efficiency Plans—regulations are being developed, and it is anticipated that they will apply to around 250 commercial and industry energy and water users including non EPA licensed sites such as large shopping centres and hospitals;
  • Prescribed industrial waste, where landfill levies per tonne will increase from $30 to $130 in 2007, and to $250 in 2008.
  • Relationships with Business, Government and the Community.

Community member Bro Sheffield Brotherton suggested that EPA would do well to broaden its view of ‘community’ to the wider public and environmental groups, beyond the present focus of communities around chemical complexes.

Consequence prediction for Terminals’ Coode Island facility

Terminals Pty Ltd presented to the Committee hazard contours for its facility, prepared in 2002 and again in 2007. The 2002 serious injury contour, representing the consequence range for serious injury, extended some 800m from the centre of the facility, almost to Hyde Street (near its intersection with Nicholson Street). The 2007 hazard contour for the Terminals facility is now significantly reduced, and now does not extend beyond the middle of the Maribyrnong River.

This reduction in the extent of the serious injury contour is principally due to acrylonitrile and propylene oxide no longer being stored by Terminals Pty Ltd, although propylene oxide is still imported through the Marstel chemical storage facility at Coode Island.

Chemicals stored at Coode Island by Terminals Pty Ltd

In response to a request at the last meeting, Terminals Ptd Ltd tabled a short paper on the chemicals which it stores and their classification by both the WorkSafe and EPA.

WorkSafe uses a Dangerous Goods Classification shown in the table below, with a list of the chemicals Terminals Pty Ltd stores at Coode Island being shown.

DG Class Dangerous Goods Class Description Chemicals stored By Terminals at Coode Island
1 Explosives none
2 Gases none
3 Flammable liquids Alcohols (Ethanol, Iso Proyl Alcohol, Butanol), Pyrolysis gasoline (known as Pygas, consisting mainly of benzene), Acrylates, Solvents (Methyl Ethyl Ketone etc)
4 Flammable solids none
5 Oxidising Agents and Organic Peroxides none
6 Poisonous (Toxic) and Infectious Substances Toluene Diisocyanate, Phenol
7 Radioactive Substances none
8 Corrosive Substances Potassium Hydroxide
9 Miscellaneous Dangerous Goods none

The EPA categorisation provided in the State Environment Protection Policy (SEPP) for the Air Environment contains three indicators as follows:

Class 1 Indicator: means a substance which is widespread in the urban air environment and which is used as an indicator of general air quality (eg carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, sulphur dioxide, visibility-reducing particles)

Class 2 Indicator: means a waste which is generally source-specific and is not a Class1 or Class 2 indicator (e.g most of the Class 3 Dangerous Goods listed above)

Class 3 Indicator: means a waste that is carcinogenic, mutagenic, teratogenic, highly toxic or highly persistent nature and thus subject to particularly stringent emission controls (eg asbestos, benzene, TDI, vinyl chloride etc.)

EPA licences the air emissions resulting from chemicals and sets maximum limits and requirements for monitoring.

Emergency telephone warning system

The CICCC has written to relevant State and Commonwealth members of Parliament, seeking support for funding to implement the Community Information and Warning System that was trialled at Maribyrnong, using simultaneous automatic telephone calls. The Victorian Government has referred the matter to the Prime Minister seeking his agreement for a unified approach, as a Project of National Significance. Victoria will commit the necessary resources to develop the proposals and facilitate a timely consideration by the Council Of Australian Governments (COAG).

The CICCC will be monitoring the progress of this important element in community safety.

Next meeting of the CICCC

The next meeting of the CICCC will be held on Thursday 20 September 2007 at the Maribyrnong Town Hall on the corner of Hyde and Napier Streets, Footscray at 6.30 pm.

Robin Saunders, Chair CICCC, 24 July 2007