Plan for west to become Melbourne’s tip slammed

One of the slopes of Werribee's 'Tip Mountain'.

On the eve of the public submission deadline, residents have rejected Wyndham council’s plans to accept waste from across Melbourne.

The council is backing three main dump sites, at Werribee, Ravenhall and Wollert, as “airfill hubs” to take overflows as tips in Melbourne’s south-east fill up and close over the next 15 years.

Don’t Waste Wyndham spokesman Harry van Moorst slammed the draft Metropolitan Waste and Resource Recovery Implementation Plan, saying it would create large mountains of household and commercial waste at the Werribee tip, and other sites in the west and north.

He said current council guidelines allowed mountains of waste as high as 24 metres above ground level, but is fearful this limit will soar.

“People are happy to get more landfill, as long as it is still underground,” Mr van Moorst said. “But with the amount of waste coming through increasing exponentially, we can expect to see mountains of rubbish.”

At a consultation session at Wyndham council chambers last week, Mr van Moorst said people are unanimous in their opposition.

“Everybody agreed the waste should be at the bottom of the ground,” he said. “What we need is a better recycling and sorting system, so there is less waste being dumped.”

Julian Menegazzo, who lives next door to Werribee tip, also expressed his frustration.

“We’ve lived next door to this tip for 35 years, and never really had an issue, until they started making these mountains,” he said.

“We just got rid of the stigma of Werribee being known as a sewerage farm.

“Now we’re going to start taking everybody’s rubbish.”

Mr Menegazzo said it was unfair that Werribee and the two other sites take waste from the rest of Melbourne. Werribee South resident John Faranda said other communities around Melbourne should “look after their own rubbish and not rely on [Werribee]”.

Werribee MP Tim Pallas said all issues need to be taken into account, to balance community concerns, the need to manage waste, growing populations and increasing land use demands.

Deadline for submissions is December 18.