STOP FOY! Say no to burning plastics as fuel, why not recycle instead?

Update The ACT Government has formed an Inquiry Panel to look at the health and environmental impacts of the proposed oil refinery at Hume, ACT (Australian Capital Territory).

The inquiry held two sessions Monday 6 & Tuesday 7 March. Whether you were able to attend, or not, the panel members have invited comment so please send them your concerns and submissions to:

The oil refinery is proposed by a mining company, FOY Group, to raise funds due to their cashflow problems and suspension of trading on the ASX (Australian Stock Exchange). They want to truck in 200 tonnes per day of plastics from interstate and use a catalytic cracking process in 4 giant kilns (each processing 50 tonnes per day) to liquefy plastics to a sludge and then vaporise them in to diesel, petrol and liquid petroleum gas and store almost 2 million litres on the site, within 1.3km from homes.

The latest information shows that the ACT generates only a fraction of the recyclable plastic required to produce the diesel. As a result, the plastics (73,000 tonnes) will have to be trucked in from inter-state. This will wipe out all GHG (Green House Gas) emissions off-set by the ACT Light Rail or the Solar Highway solar farms.

Add the GHG emissions produced during processing (burning of large quantities of gas to heat the 4 kilns and catalytic chambers), during burning of the fuel in vehicle engines and finally during production of virgin plastics to replace these that are being removed from the recycling loop, this has to be the most unsustainable project, ever.

This will destroy the plastics forever and undermines higher-order use, such as recycling. Recycling uses less energy and doesn't result in massive carbon emissions that will undo all the renewable energy targets in the ACT, including roof-top solar installations and the Solar Highway's solar farms. In addition, further resources are needed to extract oil and replace these plastics that were removed from the circular economy.

If this sounds like it doesn't make sense to you, you're not alone. The Conservation Council has published this article with commentary on the Inquiry panel and another article in their newsletter regarding the draft terms of reference not considering the huge environmental impact and undoing of the ACT's renewable targets.

The refinery is proposed at this new location, after failing to get approval in Berkeley Vale, NSW (New South Wales, Australia) - its approvals were withdrawn, as there was a lack of empirical data for its safety and it doesn't meet the stringent targets for materials recovery (NSW does not permit or agree with the recovery of transport fuels from recyclable plastics).

Our submission and various others to the ACT Government's Environment and Planning Directorate (ACT EPD) are posted below for you to view. These cover the many failings of the EIS and raise serious questions requiring answers. We've also put together a fact sheet (2.2Mb).

What can you do now?

STEP 1 - Paper petition to Members of the Legislative Assembly STEP 2 - online petition STEP 3 - share our page with your friends

Download our paper petition and sign, circulate and mail to us once partially or wholly completed (no minimum number of signatures required) to:
PO Box 5127
Chisholm, ACT 2905

Further information on the draft EIS process is at the ACT Environment & Planning Directorate website.

You should also write to your Member in the Legislative Assembly, list of members here.

CPR Inc has written to the Ministers for Planning and Land Management, Health and Climate Change and Sustainability (Mick Gentleman, ACT Labor, Meegan Fitzharris, ACT Labor and Shane Rattenbury, ACT Greens.

You can view our letters here:
Letter to Ministers calling for inquiry panel (290.1Kb)
Letter to Chief Minister & Treasurer, Andrew Barr, highlighting site remediation risks and associated costs (1.3Mb)
Letter to Minister for Health, Meegan Fitzharris highlighting health risks from particulate matter (36.7Kb)

CPR Inc is a community group formed in 2008 to advocate for a healthy and sustainable future and to protect residents against heavy industry, including the gas-fired power station that was proposed in rural horse paddocks.

Registered in the ACT (association number: A04736), you can reach us at PO Box 5127, Chisholm, ACT 2905 or email to


The following submissions are made public, by various members of the community who requested us to share with you, to allow you to view the range of issues and concerns raised.

CPR Response to the Draft EIS - Landfill Diversion Facility (2.9Mb)

• Resident A - Submission_FOY_Group (287Kb)

• Resident B - Submission_DraftEIS (222.1Kb)

• Resident C - EIS_submission-22Sep2016 (85.2Kb)

• Resident D, 1 - Submission_Draft_EIS_Proposal_201600038_v15 (11.3Mb)

• Resident D, 2 - Follow_Up_Submission_Draft_EIS_Proposal_201600038_v14.pdf (797Kb)

• Government Paddock User Group - GPUG sub on plastics to fuel facility (288.2Kb)

• Resident E - ACTPLA_sub_plastics_to_fuel (73.5Kb)

• Resident F, 1 - FOY_Proposal-Submission_to_ACTPLA (97.8Kb)

• Resident F, 2 - Community_Submission_ICS_Issues (68Kb)

• Resident G - FOY_submission_to_DRAFT_EIS (138Kb)

• Gilmore Residents Group - EIS_FOY_Gilmore_Res_23Sep16_v3 (8.2Mb)

• ACT Equestrian Association - plastics_to_fuel_cl-bs_sub (157.2Kb)

• Jerrabomberra Residents Association - Submission-EIS-Hume-Waste-Plastic-To-Fuel-Facility_JRA_27092016 (58.6Kb)

• Resident H - 13-Hume_Waste_Plastic_to_Fuel_Facility (335.8Kb)

• Tuggeranong Community Council, 1 - 14-TCC_Plastics_Response_1.0 (572.6Kb)

• Tuggeranong Community Council, 2 - Plastics_Fuel_Proposal-TCC_Response_4.0 623Kb