Community urged to have its say on standards for composting facilities

Published Thursday, 09 May, 2024 at 02:05 PM

Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef and Minister for Science and Innovation
The Honourable Leanne Linard

  • The Miles Government is seeking the community’s feedback on proposed stronger regulations requiring composting facilities to minimise odour impacts on local communities.
  • The proposed regulations include giving the regulator the power to require composting facilities close to residential zones to enclose their operations if they are receiving highly odorous wastes.  
  • Consultation with the community and industry is now open and closes on 14 June.

Queenslanders are invited to have their say on proposed stronger regulations which aim to help reduce odour impacts from composting facilities on nearby communities.

Community concerns regarding odour from composting facilities have highlighted the need to ensure composting operations close to residential areas meet certain standards.

The proposed changes would enable the regulator to require composting facilities near residential zones receiving highly odorous waste to have in-vessel or enclosed processing.

They would also better enable the regulator to ensure interstate transporters of highly odorous waste do not take waste to sites which do not meet these requirements. 

Operators not accepting highly odorous feedstocks, or not located near residential zones, would be able to continue open windrow composting under the proposed regulation changes.

The government is now seeking community and industry feedback on proposed regulation changes to prescribe the standard for composting facilities in Queensland.

While proposed changes would apply statewide, the need for change has largely arisen from odour issues impacting the Ipswich community.

It’s part of a five-point action plan to address these issues in Ipswich, which includes increased compliance activities, community engagement, expansion of air monitoring, the review of powers and penalties under the legislation and modernising environmental authority (EA) conditions for composting facilities.

The proposed changes build on these actions, particularly the existing process to modernise EA conditions for composting facilities. The government is also seeking feedback from industry on how it can work with composting facilities to support transition to the best practice standard.

Quotes attributable to the Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef and Minister for Science and Innovation, Leanne Linard:

“The organics industry in Queensland plays an important role helping reduce waste going to landfill, but this shouldn’t be at the expense of the community or the environment.

“We know the close proximity of residential development to composting sites is adversely impacting local residents.

“In 2023, the regulator received more than 8,000 community complaints about odour, most related to composting facilities in the Swanbank/New Chum area, clearly demonstrating that facilities need to meet best practice standards in these areas.

“The members for Bundamba, Jordan, and Ipswich, on behalf of their communities, have called for stronger regulation to resolve odour issues.

“At a community meeting in Redbank in September, I gave a commitment that the government would consider stronger regulations that would require all existing organics facilities in close proximity to residential areas to transition to fully-enclosed facilities.

“The Miles Government is delivering on that commitment.

“The government is seeking public feedback on potential changes that could help achieve the right outcome for the community, the environment, and allow industry to continue.”

Further information:

To participate in the consultation, visit


Media contact: Scott Chandler – (07) 3719 7339