The Brimbank council and residents have slammed a decision to approve a large expansion of the Melbourne Regional Landfill at Ravenhall.
The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal last week approved an additional seven cells at the landfill which will allow the site to operate until about 2036.
Brimbank mayor Lucinda Congreve said the decision means the west will continue to be the dumping ground for greater Melbourne.
“We’ve been fighting against this landfill expansion for almost two years now. Our community is extremely opposed to the expansion of the Ravenhall tip, as is this council,” Cr Congreve said.
“This is particularly concerning because it doesn’t encourage the development of an environmental sustainable solution to managing waste in the medium to longer term.
“Expansion of the landfill also means we could be seeing rubbish trucks travel across metropolitan Melbourne and Brimbank to the tip, impacting on our city for years to come.”
The council has been appealing the tip expansion since 2017. It says the expansion doesn’t align with state government policy on the grounds that it could potentially divert investment from alternative forms of waste disposal and innovation.
“On behalf of our community and the west, we’ve been fighting against a plan to extend a rubbish tip that already has existing problems, and which would lock the area into using obsolete and ineffective modes of waste disposal,” Cr Congreve said.
“The tip expansion would reinforce Victoria’s reliance on landfills … over the long term, which is contrary to future direction for waste management in Victoria.”
Stop the Tip lead campaigner Marion Martin said the community had been let down.
“It’s very disappointing. We’re still going through it all and our lawyer is currently looking over it,” Ms Martin said.
“There’s a lot of conditions [in the approval]. I don’t have much confidence in the EPA anymore, but hope it does its job enforcing the conditions.”
Brimbank council and the Stop the Tip Group said they would review details of the decision before determining further options.
“Were hopeful we’ve still got somewhere to go,” Ms Martin said.