Posts Tagged ‘Dr Helen Lewis’

Guest Blog – Battery Stewardship Moves to the Next Stage in Australia

Posted by GlobalPSC at 2:11 pm, August 13th, 2015Comments4

The Global Product Stewardship Council periodically invites thought leaders on product stewardship and producer responsibility to contribute guest blogs. Our guest blogger for this post is Dr Helen Lewis, Principal of Helen Lewis Research and Chief Executive of the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative (ABRI). 

 

At their last meeting in July, Australian Environment Ministers agreed to continue work on an industry-driven stewardship program for handheld batteries but with a focus on hazardous and rechargeable batteries only.

This is a significant win for Energizer, Duracell and the Consumer Electronics Suppliers Association (CESA), who have argued that battery stewardship for primary batteries would need to be regulated to ensure that all suppliers participate. During a Product Stewardship Institute battery recycling webinar (5/6 November 2014) Energizer’s spokesman advised that they had ‘zero tolerance’ for voluntary stewardship but would work with ABRI to develop a regulatory solution.

Handheld batteries are one of only two product categories that are still listed on the national ‘priority list’ for government action under the Product Stewardship Act. That list identifies products that the Minister for the Environment will consider for regulation or accreditation under the Act.

The Queensland Government is leading negotiations on the battery stewardship program on behalf of all government jurisdictions. A discussion paper, released in March 2014, outlined proposals for battery stewardship that were well received by most stakeholders but failed to secure the necessary level of industry support, particularly from primary battery manufacturers.

Following the Ministers’ decision to refine the scope to rechargeable and hazardous batteries only, a more focused proposal is expected to be developed by key industry associations and brand owners in late 2015 for broader consultation. While the exact scope of the stewardship scheme is yet to be defined, it is likely to include all handheld rechargeable batteries weighing less than 5kg as well as primary button cells. Button and coin cells have been the subject of extensive media coverage in Australia over the past two years due to an increasing number of infants and children presenting at hospitals with life threatening injuries associated with batteries.

The Australian Battery Recycling Initiative will continue to advocate for ‘all battery’ recycling services because these offer the most convenient and environmentally-responsible solution for consumers. Existing battery recycling programs, which are funded by state government agencies, local councils and retailers such as ALDI and Battery World, already collect both primary and secondary batteries.

Nevertheless, the establishment of a national, voluntary stewardship scheme for rechargeable batteries would be a welcome development because it would increase industry engagement and improve the availability of recycling services. ABRI is working on a series of pilot projects for particular battery types to inform the design of a national program. The first of these, for power tool batteries, will commence in September this year.

At the same time ABRI will continue to work on regulatory options for primary batteries. These include stand-alone regulations (similar to the model legislation developed by the battery industry in the US) or extension of the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme to include primary batteries. If discussions on a voluntary scheme for rechargeable batteries do not reach a successful outcome in 2016 then ABRI will argue that regulations should apply to all handheld batteries.

The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the Global Product Stewardship Council.  

Helen Lewis is part-time chief executive of the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative. She has been actively involved in product stewardship initiatives for plastics, packaging and batteries for over 20 years. Helen is a member of the GlobalPSC Advisory Group

 

Two Weeks to Go! Recycling in a Global Economy – GlobalPSC Thought Leadership Forum

Posted by GlobalPSC at 9:32 am, October 13th, 2014Comments0

Recycling in a Global Economy
SMC Conference & Function Centre, 66 Goulburn Street, Sydney
9:00am to 1:00pm

The Global Product Stewardship Council and its members invite you to our latest thought leadership forum featuring Adam Minter, the author of best-selling book Junkyard Planet. Adam is a third-generation scrap dealer turned journalist who’s spent over a decade living in Asia, examining recycling practices first-hand and sharing his insights.

The GlobalPSC and electronics recycler TES-AMM are pleased to provide this first Australian opportunity to hear and meet Adam Minter. Adam’s presentation will be followed by a panel discussion with Adam and other international experts on the implications of Adam’s insights for Australia. Participants will include:

  • Anna Minns, General Manager TerraCycle Australia & New Zealand
  • John Lingelbach, Executive Director of SERI
  • Justin O’Sullivan, Executive Director – Sales Operations of Dell Australia
  • Scientia Professor Veena Sahajwalla, Director of SMaRT Centre, UNSW Australia
  • John Gertsakis, Chief Sustainability Officer of Infoactiv Group and Product Stewardship Advisory Group member
  • Dr Helen Lewis, Principal of Helen Lewis Research and Australian Battery Recycling Initiative Chief Executive

Discussions will be facilitated by GlobalPSC CEO Russ Martin.

Join us to learn and discuss:

  • How is economic growth in China driving demand for recycled materials?
  • How does the global trade in recyclable materials affect recycling in countries like the US and Australia?
  • How can we ensure responsible recycling practices, particularly for e-waste and plastics?
  • How do changing economic conditions both help and hurt recycling and reuse, especially for electronics?
  • What role will the informal sector play in the future of recycling?
  • What are the implications of global material flows for product stewardship?
  • What are incentives and drivers for incorporating Design for Environment and the circular economy in product stewardship?

Registrations are $275 (GST-incl) for non-members of the GlobalPSC and $125 (GST-incl) for GlobalPSC members. Registration and payment information is available here. A light lunch will be provided for registered attendees.

Proudly sponsored by TES-AMM, DellTechCollect and SERI.

 

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GlobalPSC Forms Advisory Group on Product Stewardship and Extended Producer Responsibility

Posted by GlobalPSC at 8:02 pm, July 31st, 2014Comments9

GlobalPSC_Advisory_Group_0714At the Global Product Stewardship Council, we take pride in the breadth and depth of experience represented by our members and our extensive global network of those in the know. We regularly seek information and advice from a diverse range of experts across varying product types, regulatory perspectives and program experience. It therefore gives us great pleasure to announce the founding members of the GlobalPSC Advisory Group spanning Europe, Africa, North America and the Asia Pacific:

Brief profiles for GlobalPSC Advisory Group members are provided here.

The GlobalPSC will regularly canvass information and views from the Advisory Group, as we did recently in preparing  submissions to governments on proposed changes to product stewardship and extended producer responsibility frameworks in Nova Scotia and New Zealand. We greatly appreciate their contributions to the continued growth of the GlobalPSC and look forward to working with them in the years to come.

Recycling in a Global Economy – GlobalPSC Thought Leadership Forum

Posted by GlobalPSC at 2:48 pm, July 31st, 2014Comments6

Recycling in a Global Economy
SMC Conference & Function Centre, 66 Goulburn Street, Sydney
9:00am to 1:00pm

The Global Product Stewardship Council and its members invite you to our latest thought leadership forum featuring Adam Minter, the author of best-selling book Junkyard Planet. Adam is a third-generation scrap dealer turned journalist who’s spent over a decade living in Asia, examining recycling practices first-hand and sharing his insights.

The GlobalPSC and electronics recycler TES-AMM are pleased to provide this first Australian opportunity to hear and meet Adam Minter. Adam’s presentation will be followed by a panel discussion with Adam and other international experts on the implications of Adam’s insights for Australia. Participants will include:

  • Anna Minns, General Manager TerraCycle Australia & New Zealand
  • John Lingelbach, Executive Director of SERI
  • Justin O’Sullivan, Executive Director – Sales Operations of Dell Australia
  • Scientia Professor Veena Sahajwalla, Director of SMaRT Centre, UNSW Australia
  • John Gertsakis, Chief Sustainability Officer of Infoactiv Group and Product Stewardship Advisory Group member
  • Dr Helen Lewis, Principal of Helen Lewis Research and Australian Battery Recycling Initiative Chief Executive

Discussions will be facilitated by GlobalPSC CEO Russ Martin.

Join us to learn and discuss:

  • How is economic growth in China driving demand for recycled materials?
  • How does the global trade in recyclable materials affect recycling in countries like the US and Australia?
  • How can we ensure responsible recycling practices, particularly for e-waste and plastics?
  • How do changing economic conditions both help and hurt recycling and reuse, especially for electronics?
  • What role will the informal sector play in the future of recycling?
  • What are the implications of global material flows for product stewardship?
  • What are incentives and drivers for incorporating Design for Environment and the circular economy in product stewardship?

Registrations are $275 (GST-incl) for non-members of the GlobalPSC and $125 (GST-incl) for GlobalPSC members. Registration and payment information is available here. A light lunch will be provided for registered attendees.

Proudly sponsored by TES-AMM, DellTechCollect and SERI.

 

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GlobalPSC Member – Helen Lewis Research

Posted by GlobalPSC at 9:39 am, March 7th, 2014Comments9

Dr Helen Lewis, founder of Helen Lewis Research, is an environmental consultant with a focus on product stewardship and packaging sustainability.

She works for a variety of clients in government and the private sector to promote design for sustainability and increased recovery of products and packaging at end of life.

Helen has been the Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative (ABRI) since early 2010. She has also worked closely with the Australian Packaging Covenant (APC) since its inception on capacity building projects including delivery of workshops, guidelines and industry case studies.

Helen is an Adjunct Professor at RMIT University and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP). She is co-author of:

  • ‘Packaging for Sustainability’, with Karli Verghese and Leanne Fitzpatrick (Springer, 2012)
  • ‘Design + Environment’, with John Gertsakis (Greenleaf, 2001).

Helen also serves as a member of the GlobalPSC Advisory Group.

 

Batteryback Launches Across 34 Melbourne Retail Locations

Posted by GlobalPSC at 8:15 pm, July 4th, 2013Comments0

The Global Product Stewardship Council recently joined Sustainability Victoria (SV), the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative (ABRI), MobileMuster, recyclers including TES-AMM and various retailers in launching Batteryback across 34 retail locations in Melbourne, Australia. Batteryback is a free household battery collection and recycling service available at select Bunnings, Coles, HEARLINK, Michael’s Cameras, Queen’s Parade Hardware and Officeworks stores.

Sustainability Victoria CEO Stan Krpan (pictured, 2nd from right) said Batteryback aims to reduce the number of batteries going to landfill and recover more reusable material within the batteries, noting
“Every year 350 million batteries are imported into Australia. 260 million of these batteries will be disposed of and only 5% are currently being recycled.
“Batteries contain dangerous substances such as lead, cadmium, mercury, zinc that are not only hazardous to human health and the environment but are valuable resources that should be recovered and re-used.”
“Since Batteryback first began as a trial in 2007, the program has recycled over 8,000 kilograms of batteries, equivalent to over 421,000 AA batteries. Today, with 34 retail sites located across Melbourne it is now even more convenient for households to recycle their batteries.
“Batteryback is a great example of government and industry working in partnership to provide safe disposal solutions for waste, increase recycling and maintain a healthy environment for all”, said Mr Krpan.
Dr Helen Lewis, CEO of ABRI (pictured, far right) said,
“ABRI is seeking industry and government support for a national program to recover and recycle all household batteries. Batteryback is an important stepping stone in this process”
The Australian Government and jurisdictions have been actively targeting batteries and paint for product stewardship initiatives. Packaging, air conditioners and refrigerators have also been targeted for possible action. The GlobalPSC and members such as SV, the Australian Paint Manufacturers’ Federation Inc. and Australian Packaging Covenant are collaborating to help ensure that such efforts are practical and effective.

Australian Environment Ministers Take Action on Batteries and Paint

Posted by GlobalPSC at 4:57 pm, April 11th, 2013Comments15

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Environment Ministers from Australia have agreed on the need to include end-of-life handheld batteries and waste paint in the Standing Council on Environment and Water’s (SCEW) work plan. In the communique announcing the decision, SCEW stated,

“More than 264 million handheld batteries reach the end of their useful life each year and the equivalent of 18,000 tonnes of paint require disposal each year. There could be significant environmental and community benefits to be gained from working with industry to find better management solutions for these products. Ministers asked officials to develop a work program and examine funding arrangements to progress these issues.”

The Global Product Stewardship Council and GlobalPSC members have been actively facilitating the development of product stewardship for both batteries and paint to help transition from government-funded takeback schemes to industry-led producer responsibility. In addition to running pilot projects, Government members Sustainability Victoria (SV) have been engaging industry players to develop practical approaches to product stewardship for the products.

Australian Battery Recycling Initiative (ABRI) Chief Executive Dr Helen Lewis supported the SCEW decision, telling the GlobalPSC,

“This decision represents a significant milestone in ABRI’s campaign to promote the development of sustainable recovery programs for used batteries. We look forward to working with environment ministers and other stakeholders to explore options to increase recycling of handheld batteries. We need to ensure that everyone involved in the production or consumption of batteries – from the manufacturer or importer through to the consumer – plays their part in ensuring that batteries are used and recovered in a sustainable way.”

In conjunction with SV and ABRI, the GlobalPSC facilitated initial stakeholder discussions, with an aim to developing a strategic plan to address domestic battery stewardship over the next three years. GlobalPSC Foundation members MS2 have also been incorporating GlobalPSC program expertise and data in developing the public policy and business case on handheld battery product stewardship for SV.

GlobalPSC member the Australian Paint Manufacturers’ Federation (APMF) is collaborating with SV on an industry-led pilot program to collect trade waste data and to examine the most efficient and environmentally sound ways to collect and treat waste paint. The GlobalPSC is incorporating trial results in helping SV develop the public policy and business case for paint stewardship.

Richard Phillips, Executive Director of the APMF, also supported the decision by Environment Ministers and discussed plans for further research,

“The APMF supports the SCEW decision to include waste architectural and decorative paints in its work plan. A key element of our current Strategic Plan involves working with Governments on a future product stewardship scheme for waste architectural and decorative paint. When looking to the future, the APMF Council believes that a voluntary industry program has the potential to provide a cost effective and efficient product stewardship scheme for our sector. The current PaintCare trial program in Victoria also acknowledges that any future product stewardship program should also consider the issue of waste paint generated from the trade sector. Currently, there is no collection service in any state or territory for trade waste paint. The APMF also believes that further research is now warranted. Hence, we are funding a joint research project with Sustainability Victoria for Swinburne University of Technology to generate new research into better and more environmental friendly ways to address waste paint.”

John Polhill, Product Stewardship Specialist – Waste Strategy with SV, reinforced the importance of collaboration,

“The Victorian Government is committed to working with industry to effectively manage problematic products in accordance with Victorian and national waste policy. The work with ABRI and APMF demonstrates the success of industry-government partnerships thusfar.”

The GlobalPSC and several members have been appointed by the Australian Government to a Product Stewardship Advisory Group that provides independent advice to the government on products that could be considered for attention under the Product Stewardship Act. The SCEW work plan operates in conjunction with the Product Stewardship Advisory Group to explore opportunities for management of priority products.

 

Sydney & Melbourne Round Tables on Sustainable Packaging

Posted by GlobalPSC at 3:12 pm, June 21st, 2012Comments2

 

 

 

 

 

The Global Product Stewardship Council and Sustainable Packaging Alliance (SPA) are hosting a series of Round Tables on Sustainable Packaging in Sydney and Melbourne.

The Round Tables are designed to give industry and stakeholders the opportunity to learn of new developments and discuss issues affecting the packaging sector.

Australian Packaging Covenant (APC) signatories receive a $100 discount off event registrations.

A second series of Round Tables, focussed on Flexible Plastics will be held in Sydney (October 24th) and Melbourne (October 26th).  The SPA Roundtables align directly with the AFGC Future of Packaging White Paper, which is aimed at driving more strategic and tangible action on packaging sustainability. A full copy of the white paper can be found at the AFGC’s website.

The APC invests in projects that support the achievement of the APC’s vision. One of the challenges identified by the APC is the recovery of flexible plastics.  Presentations will be provided on some of the current flexible plastics recovery projects the APC is supporting at the Round Tables.

Speakers vary depending on location but include:

  • Tanya Barden, Director, Sustainability Trade and Innovation, AFGC
  • Angela McClowry, Sustainability Policy Analyst, AFGC
  • Richard Smith, General Manager Technical, Amcor Flexibles Asia Pacific ANZ
  • Liz Kasell, Director of Development, RED Group
  • Peter Allan, Director, Sustainable Resource Use
  • Rowan Williams, President, Australasian Bioplastics Association
  • Peter Paterson, National Business Development Manager, Replas
  • Mark Jacobson, General Manager, Replas
  • Peter Bury, Director, Strategy & Innovation, Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association
  • Jason Campbell, Director, Waste Enterprises
  • Ed George, Retail Brands Manager, Tapex
  • John Lawson, General Manager Development, Global Renewables

A flyer containing full program and registration details is available here.

The first round of events held in Sydney and Melbourne focused on ‘Design for Sustainability”. A diverse set of speakers and organsiations were secured for the events including:

  • Dr Helen Lewis of Helen Lewis Research
  • Brett Giddings, Membership Services Manager of the Australian Packaging Covenant
  • Mark Solari, Packaging & Materials Handling Manager of ASSA-ABLOY (Melbourne only)
  • Kane Hardingham, Woolworths (Sydney only)
  • Steve Bourke, Director Environment, Health and Safety of O-I Oceania
  • Wendy Favorito, Director & Consumer Representative of Arthritis Australia
  • Geoff Aitkin, Sales Manager, Food of Ardagh Group (Melbourne only)
  • Carmen Rechbauer, Manager Shared Business Services of NSW Health (Sydney only)
  • Jacky Nordsvan, Packaging Specialist of Nestlé Australia (Sydney only)

The Australian Round Tables are complemented by the Auckland Round Table on Drivers for Packaging Product Stewardship, which was held 10 July and hosted by the GlobalPSC and SPA in conjunction with the Packaging Council of New Zealand.

Product Stewardship Implementation Workshop – Enviro 2012

Posted by GlobalPSC at 5:10 pm, March 25th, 2012Comments3

The Global Product Stewardship Council is bringing experts on product stewardship policies and programs together to provide a practical product stewardship implementation workshop on 24 July in conjunction with the Enviro 2012 Conference & Exhibition in Adelaide, Australia.

 

Australia’s new Product Stewardship Act provides a policy framework for voluntary, co-regulatory and mandatory product stewardship programs. What are the implications? What are the opportunities and risks for your organisation?

Following keynote presentations providing international and domestic context, content will be targeted through short presentations and facilitated panel discussions in order to maximise opportunities for interaction and learning.

International experts will provide insight to overseas experience and commercial drivers for product stewardship and producer responsibility. Federal and state policy makers will provide context and address program expectations. Managers of existing programs will share practical insights and challenges of program implementation. Managers of new programs will address recovery, access, logistics, finance and other aspects of pending programs for collecting TVs, computers, other electronics and other products through product stewardship.

Confirmed plenary speakers include:

Confirmed panel speakers include:

  • Vaughan Levitzke, Chief Executive of Zero Waste SA;
  • John Polhill, Product Stewardship Specialist – Waste Strategy of Sustainability Victoria;
  • Carmel Dollisson, General Manager of Australia and New Zealand Recycling Platform Ltd;
  • Peter Bruce, Senior Director – Service Parts Logistics of DHL Supply Chain;
  • Rose Read, Manager, Recycling of MobileMuster;
  • Ed George of Plasback;
  • Greg Leslie, Battery World franchisee recycling spokesperson; and
  • Lorraine Lilley, Project Manager of the FluoroCycle Scheme.

Panel discussions will be facilitated by Helen Lewis, Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative and Russ Martin, GlobalPSC President.

GlobalPSC members receive discounted registration rates for the workshop and a 10% discount off Enviro Conference delegate registrations. Registration details are available here.

Sponsors include:

To discuss sponsorship opportunities, contact russ@globalpsc.net.

Hyperlinked organisations are all GlobalPSC members.

Contrary to a recent email reminder from Enviro 2012, the workshop will not address the issue of container deposits. The workshop will, however, address various electronics, including TVs, computers and mobile phones, as well as other products such as batteries, fluorescent bulbs and agricultural chemicals and chemical containers.

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Global Product Stewardship Council

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Email: info@globalpsc.net