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Finding solutions to a growing waste problem


Brigid Veale
3 May 2016

The growing problem of what to do with the world’s waste will be top of mind for more than 500 delegates at the Coffs Harbour Waste Conference this week.

Associate Professor Amanda Reichelt-Brushett, from Southern Cross University’s School of Environment, Science and Engineering, is one of the keynote speakers and will focus on the need for new technologies and engineering solutions.

“Waste management is a growing issue throughout the world. There are new job opportunities in this field due to the increasing need to manage waste in a safe and appropriate manner,” Professor Reichelt-Brushett said.

“Innovative technologies and science and engineering solutions coupled with holistic thinking and problem solving are required to ensure society grapples with the cost of dealing with waste and to help define new frontiers in waste minimisation and resource recovery.”

Southern Cross University is introduced a new major area of study in 2017 — waste and resource recovery — as part of its  Bachelor of Environmental Science.

The University has a strong track record in waste research covering all aspects of contamination, environmental economics, resource recovery, biodegradable polymers, carbon capture, phytoremediation and bioremediation technologies.

“We have identified the need to produce a new generation of graduates who are equipped to deal with the future of waste in society,” said Professor Reichelt-Brushett.

“Waste reduction at the source requires innovation and social responsibility and this links waste management solutions to the social sciences.”

Professor Reichelt-Brushett said the conference provided an ideal opportunity to connect with key industry stakeholders to identify new areas for research and to ensure that graduates were job-ready.

“We pride ourselves on applied learning and our students will be involved in laboratory classes, field trips, sampling activities and data collection and analysis during their studies. We also have a strong focus on providing industry internships and job training.”

The Coffs Harbour Waste Conference is being held at the Opal Cove Resort and is hosted by Coffs Harbour City Council.

Photo: Associate Professor Amanda Reichelt-Brushett.