Waste Management seems to be high on the agenda of Australian companies as we try to close the gap between Australia and advanced waste management nations like Germany. Over 1,400 visitors attended the Australian Waste and Recycling Expo held in Sydney in late November. Needless to say Fenwick Software was again involved as an exhibitor.

This was the third year of the exhibition and our second time exhibiting. We showcased enwis) – the integrated software package specifically written for the waste management and recycling industry. enwis) integrates with our core product, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, and provides an ERP system with waste management from weighbridge to general ledger.

One of the features of the exhibition was fourteen seminars over two days. They covered a broad range of topics including: ‘the implications of the carbon price and carbon farming initiative’, ‘implementation of the TV and computer recycling scheme’ and ‘recycling solutions for difficult waste streams’. You can download some of these at: AWRE Seminars | Waste & Recycling Management Seminars

A frightening presentation from the not-for-profit organisation called RichmondPRA got my attention. These facts are scary: E-waste is the fastest growing waste stream in Australia. Current recycling rates for televisions and computers are low, being less than 1% (by weight) for televisions, and only about 14% (by weight) for computers and computer products. Around 40,000 tonnes of TV’s and computers alone are destined to be recycled this year. Around 1.8 tons of raw material are used to manufacture the average desktop PC and monitor. Manufacturing one desktop computer and 17-inch CRT (cathode ray tube) monitor requires at least 240 kilograms of fossil fuels, 22 kilograms of chemicals and 1,500 kilograms of water. In terms of weight, the total amount of materials used is about equal to that of a mid-size car (UN Study, March 2004).

Of course the last place we want our E-waste to end up is in landfill – televisions and computers in landfill can leach hazardous substances. My earlier blog on eWaste explains the steps Australian Govt. is taking in this regard.

In 2013 Melbourne becomes the Waste and Recycling Exhibition centre of Australia, with two competing major exhibitions scheduled for the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre:
WasteExpo 2013 runs October 9 and 10
Australasian Waste & Recycling Expo runs November 19 and 20

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Written By Andrew Ferguson

Andrew is one of the company’s longest serving employees having joined in 1981. In recent years, his focus has been on the waste management and recycling industry, implementing enwis), as well as advising clients about strategies to use Information Technology (especially Business Intelligence) effectively in their businesses. Andrew holds a BSc (Hons) from Monash University and a Graduate Diploma in Business (Professional Management) from AIM.

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