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Sydney Water system tracks liquid trade waste

Sydney water has launched a new initiative which it says will protect Sydneysiders’ health and environment from the dangers of “poorly managed liquid trade waste”.

The utilities provider contracted Wastelink Pty Ltd to provide its locally-developed computer-based system designed to improve control, safety and efficiency across every stage of commercial liquid trade waste management within 12,700 square kilometres of Sydney.

The new system electronically records precise data from the point of collection, for example a restaurant grease trap or a manufacturing facility, right through to its destination at a liquid waste depot and disposal.

“Data is recorded and uploaded to our central system by hand-held scanners operated by contractors in the course of their daily collection runs,” said Sydney Water manager of customer sustainability Andrew Kirkwood.

“This gives Sydney Water the comprehensive, current and accurate data to monitor and plan liquid waste operations more cost-effectively and reliably than ever before — and so fulfil our overall mission to protect public health and the environment.”

The new waste tracking system, called Wastelink, has other benefits too, said Kirkwood.

“Wastelink also enables contracted liquid waste collectors to plan their runs and more reliably and efficiently, using a streamlined administrative process,” he said.

“Also, businesses registered as dischargers of liquid waste have more accurate and timely feedback, making it easier for us to deal with non-compliance issues.”

Sydney Water has actually operated a liquid trade waste tracking program for 20 years now, using its own proprietary management software. However, authorities decided that the system was not able to keep up with the growing future demands on water management required by Sydney Water.

“We needed a system providing much greater control of the whole transport to disposal process so we could minimise the impact on sewerage facilities,” said Kirkwood.

“The choice was to stay involved in developing and managing ever-more complex software tool or to take the ‘intelligent outsourcing’ path. We decided to focus on our core mission of delivering excellent water products and services.”

Sydney Water contracted Wastelink Pty Ltd to host and maintain the Wastelink system: an off-the-shelf, standard solution already proven in use by other Australian water utilities.

According to Sydney Water, Wastelink is a more powerful and advanced development of the software previously used as part of the utility’s former Wastesafe process, also developed by Wastelink. The new system integrates into Sydney Water’s existing procedures and is backwards-compatible with Wastesafe functions.

Sydney Water and Wastelink began working together with the development of the Wastesafe system in 1991. According to Kirkwood, Wastelink has the resources and expertise to ensure its systems keep ahead of the industry’s evolving needs.

“With their deep insight into our needs, Wastelink worked hard to forge an excellent consultative relationship with Sydney Water,” he said.

“There is a mutual respect and understanding that makes this a very productive working partnership.”

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