People power has won in the south-eastern Sydney suburb of Matraville where new laws passed on Friday 8 July 2022 now officially prohibit the building of an incinerator, Randwick Mayor Dylan Parker announced.
“The NSW Government has gazetted new regulations amending the Protection of the Environment Operations Act to ban waste to energy facilities in the Sydney basin.
“These new laws mean Veolia’s (formerly SUEZ) unpopular proposal to transport truckloads of rubbish to burn at the Opal paper mill in Matraville is officially dead - it cannot happen.
“This is huge news for our community who have been living with this dark cloud hanging over them for three years.
“Our community has fought this ill-conceived idea tooth and nail from the very beginning.
“Burning waste just metres from people’s homes to power a private business is just a bad idea. The community knew it from day one and I am very pleased the NSW Government has now acted to stop it from happening.
“I now call on Veolia to officially withdraw their proposal entirely from the planning system so that we can all move on,” Mayor Parker said.
The EPA has indicated the changes apply to all applications in the planning system not fully approved, meaning that even if the Matraville proposal is assessed, it must still meet the requirements of the NSW Energy from Waste Policy Statement.
Mayor Parker congratulated and thanked the hundreds and thousands of local community members who have been involved in the fight to stop the incinerator.
This includes Randwick and Bayside Councillors, State Member Michael Daley, Federal Member Matt Thistlethwaite, the No Matraville Incinerator community group, the Matraville Precinct and well-known locals including Mike Whitney and Russell Fairfax who leant their voice to the campaign.
“This is a win for people, it’s a win for common sense, and it sends a message that industry cannot trample over the environment and the community for their own benefit,” Mayor Parker said.