Ros DeGarisRos DeGaris Chair of KESAB

Report from the Chair

KESAB environmental solutions is the leading non-government organisation in South Australia for environmental sustainability education. This year KESAB environmental solutions has also engaged interstate and internationally with its programs.

The establishment of the organisation in 1966 showed South Australia’s vision for litter reduction and this has grown with public awareness to include today’s concerns for waste segregation, recycling, and finding alternatives to items that are problematic to reuse (such as plastics).

While KESAB environmental solutions has a good position of working with Governments of all levels to take waste awareness to the community, we also rely on engaging our skills with industry and community partners. In order to be at the forefront of waste education, KESAB environmental solutions is across community concerns and legislation changes, contributing to reviews of the waste industry and Container Deposit Legislation, single use plastics and kerbside recycling.

KESAB environmental solutions has been instrumental in establishing the National Litter Index (NLI) methodology and continues to work with Keep Australia Beautiful National to ensure this national measure has relevance to policy and programs that address all forms of waste.

KESAB environmental solutions continues to reach into the metropolitan and regional areas of South Australia with education programs such as Sustainable Communities Awards, Wipe out Waste and NRM Education which recognise sustainability actions by communities.

KESAB environmental solutions supports initiatives embracing Waste Reform in the South Australian industry, single use plastic legislation and development of non-plastic precincts. A program to take waste education into remote areas such as the APY lands is making progress with Government support and we look forward to this program being implemented in 2020.

It was disappointing that new legislation to bring street littering to a higher level of accountability struggled to be implemented this year; however KESAB environmental solutions is looking for ways that this program can be maintained more efficiently and effectively working with local government.

After some 40 years of successful Container Deposit Legislation in South Australia it was significant when New South Wales and Queensland legislated for similar state schemes. While the interstate schemes will bed down, in South Australia our 40 year scheme must continue to improve and ensure the intended results of litter management and reuse are achieved and keep South Australia at the forefront of litter control and reuse.

We have also seen actions within the community that, with support from KESAB environmental solutions, have used Government grants and taken positive environmentally sustainable action as a community.

KESAB environmental solutions also aligns with a number of advocacy groups including the National Waste Management & Resource Recovery Association (WMRR) and the KESAB Executive Director currently Chairs the SA Branch.

KESAB environmental solutions has the unique ability to respond quickly to changes and as an organisation we have been looking inwardly at these opportunities, refocused our financial management, building flexibility to our staff and establishing a succession planning committee.

This year we have also worked with GISA to review the Wipe out Waste program and extended Service Level Agreement, and remodelled the Sustainable Communities program and other actions to ensure KESAB environmental solutions is competitive in a challenging business environment.

The KESAB environmental solutions board is vibrant with a balance of skills to take us forward with a new 3- year Strategic Plan to be established in 2020.

On behalf of the board I would like to thank our partners and stakeholders for their support. Special thanks to John Phillips and his staff for their enthusiasm for KESAB and its mission “To inspire the South Australian community to restore, preserve and improve the environment through active participation”.

We are fortunate to have this support to deliver the cutting-edge national programs for litter and reuse.