Ballarat City Council to forge ahead on waste to energy if snubbed in upcoming budgets

Ballarat City chief executive Justine Linley

 Ballarat City chief executive Justine Linley

 Council has been attempting to forge ahead with a waste to energy plant since 2012 and requires about $2.5 million in seed funding from the either level of government to get the project off the ground.

Ballarat City chief executive Justine Linley said council had spent about seven years developing the concept and that if it couldn’t get state or federal support in the upcoming budgets it would look to the private sector to make up the shortfall.

“We need to because we are putting 30,000 tonnes into the landfill at Smythesdale and clearly that’s not a sustainable position to be in,” Ms Linley said.  “It’s a resource we should be able to use and if that can be used and turned into energy that’s used by local businesses or potentially put back into the grid that’s a much better solution.

“We’re very conscious that landfill levys are on the increase from state government and huge amounts of money from ratepayers go to the state government that we don’t get back, which is really the argument we’re putting (to state government) at the moment.”

The project has been repeatedly pitched at both levels of government, but is yet to receive the necessary financial support to begin construction.

Ballarat City Council spends about $9 million a year disposing of landfill.

“The risk is the landfill fills in in a quicker time period and we’d have to create another cell and pay more money,” Ms Linley said.