During FY2010/11, we used 19,682 megalitres of water at our Australian sites. This is consistent with our usage last year. All Australian sites enter their water use data into the central SHAERS database. Municipal water use is obtained from water bills, whereas volumes for storm water, river water, recycled process water or ground water are typically metered on site. A few sites use collected rainwater, which is unmetered. Sites in other countries that use material levels of water will commence entering data into the SHAERS database from 2012.
Australian Water Use by Source
Total Water Used was 19,682 megalitres (ML)
Many of our sites have implemented local water saving initiatives, for example our Fertilisers site in Congupna, in regional Victoria, Australia, captures all storm water on site. The storm water is used on the gardens at the site or is treated to reduce nutrient levels and released into the municipal storm water system. The site has managed to reduce water use by 10% since 2003/04, despite one of the major uses of water on site, preparing liquid fertiliser, increasing by 27% over the same time period. Our site in Geelong, Victoria, Australia also captures all stormwater in operational areas and uses it onsite. Usage is unmetered, but was estimated to be 17,500 kilolitres for FY2010/11.
In the United States, one of our Explosives sites supplies waste water from the production process to the local water authority, where it is used as a source of nitrates in their nutrient steam for a water treatment plant. Approximately 325,000 kilograms of the waste water is supplied each year, containing approximately 2% ammonium nitrate or other nitrate salts.
During FY2010/11, our Australian sites generated approximately 7,800 tonnes of solid waste, 2,289,048 tonnes of chemical waste and 14,658 kilolitres of liquid wastes. Some of this waste is non-hazardous (around 8,922 tonnes of solid and chemical waste and 10,575 kilolitres of liquid waste) and the rest is classified as hazardous waste (around 2,287,506 tonnes of solid waste, mainly phosphogypsum chemical waste that is disposed of at an on-site facility, and 4,083 kilolitres of liquid waste).
Solid waste from Australian sites, by type.
Total weight was 7,786 tonnes (tn)
Solid Chemical Waste from Australian sites by type during FY2010/11
Liquid Waste from Australian sites, by type
Total Volume was 14,658 KL
Note that most of the contaminated water is nutrient-rich water. All liquid waste is disposed offsite. Waste oil is recycled.
Waste reduction initiatives
Our Explosives business in North America has several initiatives in place to reduce waste. A recycling program captures and processes explosives products, raw materials, wash water, etc, generated by explosives testing or from manufactured products that do not meet specifications or from other sources such as customer sites where explosives may be over-aged or damaged. These materials are then re-introduced into the bulk explosives manufacturing process as raw materials. For example, at the Lehi site in Utah, in the United States, recycled materials are captured into batch loads. Water is added (or mineral oils and emulsifiers as applicable) and the product is mixed to ensure a homogeneous blend. The batches are tested to ensure that water content exceeds 35% and a certificate of analysis is generated and provided for the manufacturing plant. The recycled solution is loaded onto road tankers and shipped as non-hazardous raw material where it is used on a percentage basis, under strict quality controls, in manufacturing at the Cheyenne, Wyoming, United States emulsion plant. In calendar year 2010, the Lehi site shipped approximately 225,000 kg of this recycled solution.
IPL is a signatory to the Australian Packaging Covenant. Our fertiliser business submitted an action plan to the Covenant covering the period 2011-2015. This action plan can be downloaded here.
Over 80% of our fertiliser is supplied in bulk. Flexible Intermediate Bulk Containers (FIBCs) are used for 15% and the remaining 5% is supplied in 25-40 kilogram sacks. The main area for improvement in terms of reducing packaging waste is in the turnover and utilisation of returnable FIBCs. The action plan is available at www.packagingcovenant.org.au.