A new chapter for sustainable land use – perhaps

NSW Deputy Premier Andrew Stoner was in Eden this week, endorsing efforts to extend the wharf, located on the northern end of Twofold Bay, so larger cruise ships can berth. Contingent on the federal government putting in $10 million toward the project, the state will provide $3 million and Bega Council $2 million.

DP Stoner proposed a ‘new-chapter’ in Eden’s development and indicated “Some of the mainstays of the local economy here have gone through some pretty tough times because of restructures, and as a result we’ve seen a lot of jobs disappear.”

At the southern end of the bay, and arguably what draws one’s eye, is the SEFE mill, woodchip mountain, and its associated wharf infrastructure. Speaking on ABC radio this week, re burning native forest biomass for electricity, SEFE boss Peter Mitchell said the changes would not benefit his company.

SEFE had planned to export iron ore from the wharf, if proponents of a proposed mine near Orbost raised the capital. Perhaps regrettably, these efforts have coincided with an international plunge in iron ore prices, so it seems tough times for SEFE are set to continue.


However, the NSW government are planning something and Council is definitely involved. So, earlier in the week I submitted a suggestion on improved waste management to the latter, proposing a trail to explore potential social, economic and environmental benefits from increased recycling, coupled with available technology.

The suggestion is for waste sawn timbers be sorted, to gauge the volume suitable for other purposes, particularly ‘glulam’. Also, that Council trial an ‘off the shelf’ pyrolysis unit, the one above is produced in America.

The Australia distributor of this unit, Earth Systems Bio-energy, worked the Victorian North East Catchment Management Authority to produce a larger portable unit. What the NSW government will implement is anyone’s guess but, hopefully, it will be along these lines.


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