The strategic framework for waste management provides decision support for selection of comparative waste management options. It seeks to foster the objectives of the National Waste Policy as stated in the Consultation Paper (DECC, April 2009) and build on and incorporate key developments in waste management since the National Waste Minimisation and Management Strategy (1992) and the National Strategy for Ecologically Sustainable Development (1992).
The Strategic Framework developed for this study gives regard to the performance categories that enable waste option assessment in order to: ‘manage waste more effectively for better environmental outcomes and overall community benefit’ (DEWHA, 2009).
Consistent with Best Practice Regulation (COAG, October 2007), which requires public policy makers ‘to make judgments based on what is best for the community as a whole by measuring ‘social’, as opposed to only private, market-based costs and benefits. In the context of waste management, the net community benefit is measured by environmental, social and economic benefits.
The strategic framework for waste management (see Figure 1) seeks to provide decision support across the broad range of possible waste management options. This is achieved in part, by offering Guiding Principles for Waste Management in combination with a sound analytic framework for assessing waste management options and societal preferences.
Figure 1 Strategic Framework for Waste Management
In developing a comprehensive framework for waste decision making that meets the selection criteria, there is a need to provide an overarching approach that integrates the Decision Making Goal and Guiding Principles for Waste Management with the Assessment Method for the relevant performance areas. Further, the framework needs to be flexible to avoid unnecessarily complex analysis where it is not warranted and to offer more readily available, streamlined assessment tools.
The Strategic Framework includes:
An overarching framework that integrates guiding principles and caters for limitations and needs.
Assessment Methodology - for conducting and integrating a comprehensive performance assessment; and
Streamlined Assessment Tools - for practical guidance to waste priorities.
The Assessment methodology provides comprehensive guidance for the social, technical, environmental and cost assessment of waste systems. Consistent with the assessment methodology, the streamlined assessment tool uses best available data and approaches to assist with streamlining the assessment process and establishing a relative ranking of available solutions.