Controversial Matraville Incinerator Proposal Officially Withdrawn

Controversial Matraville Incinerator Proposal Officially Withdrawn

The proposed Matraville incinerator has been officially withdrawn following the passing of a new regulation law in July 2022, banning energy-from-waste operations within the Sydney basin. 

With the exception of the West Lithgow Precinct, Parkes Special Activation Precinct, Richmond Valley Regional Jobs Precinct and Southern Goulburn Mulwaree Precinct, the use of waste to generate energy has been banned within the Sydney basin. That meant the beginning of the end for the controversial plan to establish an incinerator in Matraville.

On 31 August 2022, Randwick City Council announced that the Matraville incinerator proposal had been formally withdrawn. 

“The NSW Government’s Planning Portal has been updated as of this afternoon 31 August 2022 to list the incinerator project (also called the Botany Cogeneration Plant) as ‘withdrawn’,” the announcement said

Mayor Dylan Parker was elated by the news saying that it was “huge news” for the community who had been fighting against the “ill-conceived idea” ever since it was proposed three years ago.

“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,” Mayor Parker said.

“I am very pleased that Veolia has responded to community feedback and now formally withdrawn their proposal.”

The Mayor then went on to congratulate and thank the local community members who have actively participated in the fight to stop the plan including Randwick and Bayside Councillors, State Member Michael Daley, Federal Member Matt Thistlethwaite, the No Matraville Incinerator community group, the Matraville Precinct.

Mayor Parker also mentioned in particular, well-known locals Mike Whitney and Russell Fairfax who have been the voice of the campaign against the incinerator. 

“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.

An online petition launched by a group called No More Incinerators received an overwhelming response from the community with more than 20,000 supporters signing against the proposed waste-to-energy incinerator plant at the paper mill recycling site on Botany Road in Matraville.

 The proposed incinerator plant was meant to generate power for the OPAL paper mill and help reduce operating costs
The proposed incinerator plant was meant to generate power for the OPAL paper mill and help reduce operating costs | Photo Credit: Randwick City Council /

Under the now scrapped proposal, the plant would have a capacity of incinerating up to 200,000 tonnes of non-recyclable materials yearly to generate power for the OPAL paper mill and help reduce operating costs. 

Amid the celebration, the group is still reminding the members of the community that the fight continues against two other plans for massive waste incinerators in Western Sydney.

“The Next Generation (TNG) wants to build a waste incinerator at Eastern Creek and is appealing the EPA’s new regulation in the Land & Environment Court. TNG are trying to say that this regulation doesn’t apply to them!” the group’s social media post reads.

No More Incinerators warned, “…what happens in Sydney’s west affects ALL of Sydney!”