Ipswich a dumping ground for NSW toxic waste

IPSWICH has emerged as a dumping ground for toxic waste from interstate, with the region's landfill operators revealing they are accepting thousands of tonnes of rubbish from NSW.

It is cheaper for NSW companies to transport their waste to Queensland than pay their own state's government charges, with Ipswich designated a popular destination.

WASTE management companies Transpacific Industries and Remondis confirmed waste, some soil contaminated with asbestos, was transported from NSW to the New Chum and Swanbank landfills.

Remondis Queensland divisional manager Chris White said their Swanbank landfill site had accepted a monthly total of 1500 tonnes of waste from NSW over the last three months.

"Certainly, NSW companies are contacting us about bringing waste to Swanbank, but we believe the transport logistics is an issue," Mr White said.

A Transpacific Industries spokeswoman would not reveal what volumes the New Chum dump was accepting.

The admission sparked more concern from community group IRATE, led by president Jim Dodril, who is already protesting Transpacific Industries' plans for the New Chum site.

"Transpacific Industries are not being very open about what's going on in there," he said.

"There is far too much secrecy about the volumes of waste going to the dump and the nature of the waste going into the dump."

After refuting reports last week, Environment Minister Andrew Powell said he now has "anecdotal evidence" of rubbish being transported north.

"I have received anecdotal evidence of increased waste transportation following the Newman Government's decision to remove the waste levy and the NSW Government's decision to increase their levy rates," Mr Powell said.

"If we receive verifiable data that suggests that cross-border waste is a problem we will take appropriate action."

Mr Powell said the Newman Government was working with the waste industry to establish a strategy that delivers strong environmental outcomes without increasing costs.

Topics:  asbestos toxic waste

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