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Environmental Management System Operational Control Procedures

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Section 1 - Purpose and Context

(1) This document contains detailed procedures related to specific aspects of the University's Environmental Management System (EMS), including:

  1. Waste Management Procedure;
  2. Pesticide Management Procedure;
  3. Emergency Preparedness and Response Procedure;
  4. Emergency Spill Response Procedure;
  5. Urban Wildlife Management Procedure; and
  6. Contractor management procedure.

(2) These procedures apply to the conduct of environmental management activities on all UWS campuses and must be read in conjunction with the University's Environmental Management Policy, Environmental Management Plan, Environmental Management System Procedures, and relevant statutes.

Section 2 - Definitions

(3) For the purposes of this procedure:

  1. air pollution - is "the emission into the air of any air impurity which includes smoke, dust (including fly ash), cinders, solid particles of any kind, gases, fumes, mists, odours and radioactive substances." (POEO 1997)
  2. boiling point - is the temperature at which a liquid changes to a vapour state at a given pressure. Flammable materials with low boiling points generally present special fire hazards.
  3. emergency - is a sudden unforeseen crisis (usually involving danger) that requires immediate action.
  4. flashpoint - is the lowest temperature at which a liquid gives off enough vapour to form an ignitable mixture with air and burn when a source of ignition (sparks, open flames, cigarettes, etc.) is present.
  5. leak - is a slow discharge over time such as a drip at a join which is not tight, worn or under pressure.
  6. liquid waste: defined as a waste that does not meet the non-liquid waste criteria and is not a gas.
  7. material harm to the environment - "includes actual or potential harm to the health or safety of human beings or to ecosystems that is not trivial or that results in actual or potential loss or property damage of an amount over $10,000. "(POEO 1997)
  8. non-liquid waste - is defined as any waste that does not contain free flowing liquids (i.e. waste that can be moved with a shovel).
  9. pest - is "in relation to an animal, plant or thing - any animal, plant or other biological entity that injuriously affects the physical condition, worth or utility of the first-mentioned animal or plant or of that thing"
  10. pesticide (which includes herbicides and fungicides) - may also be a hazardous substance, a dangerous good, a scheduled poison and/or a fumigant and is an agricultural or veterinary chemical product that is used as a means of directly or indirectly:
    1. destroying, stupefying, repelling, inhibiting the feeding of, or preventing infestation by or attacks of, any pest in relation to a plant, a place or a thing;
    2. destroying a plant;
    3. modifying the physiology of a plant or pest so as to alter its natural development, productivity, quality or reproductive capacity;
    4. modifying an effect of another agricultural chemical product; or
    5. attracting a pest for the purpose of destroying it.
  11. protective action zone - is "the area in which people are at risk of harmful exposure." (The US Emergency Response Guide, 2000). Random changes in wind direction are factored into this zone and are assumed to confine the vapour plume to an area within 30 degrees on either side of the predominant wind direction. This results in a crosswind protective action distance equal to the downwind protective action distance.
  12. native wildlife - is wild fauna living in a natural, undomesticated state that is indigenous to or originating from Australia.
  13. non-native wildlife - is wild fauna living in a natural, undomesticated state that has been introduced from a country other than Australia.
  14. protected fauna - in NSW refers to all native wildlife including threatened species, endangered populations and endangered ecological communities
  15. spill - is a large discharge in a small time such as a hydraulic hose which splits or a drum which overturns. Several factors determine whether a spill is minor or major, such as the nature of the material, the volume of the spill and risk to the environmental and human health. As a rule of thumb and excluding quantities spilled in laboratories, minor spills can generally be categorised as spills involving quantities of 200 litres or less, while major spills are greater than 200 litres.
    1. major spill - is a spill where any of the following applies:
      • the responsible party and/or material spilled is unknown;
      • the material spilled is highly toxic;
      • a large (or undetermined) quantity was spilled;
      • a significant fire hazard may be present;
      • the material has the potential to reach the environment; and
      • advanced personnel protective equipment is required.
    2. minor spill - is a spill where all of the following applies:
      • the responsible party is at the scene;
      • the material spilled is known;
      • the material spilled is not highly toxic;
      • the quantity spilled is small;
      • there is no fire hazard;
      • the material has little or no potential to reach the environment (e.g., via a floor drain); and
      • advanced personnel protective equipment (i.e., more than gloves and a half-face respirator) is not needed.
  16. unprotected fauna refers to non-native wildlife. A comprehensive list of unprotected fauna can be found under Schedule 11 of the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974.
  17. waste - is defined in the Waste Minimisation and Management Act 1995 and Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 as "any discarded, rejected, unwanted surplus or abandoned substance" that could cause an environmental change due to its volume or composition.
  18. water pollution - is "introducing into or onto, waters (whether through an act or omission) any matter, whether solid, liquid or gaseous, so that the physical, chemical or biological condition of the waters is changed and makes, or is likely to make, the waters unclean, noxious, poisonous or impure, detrimental to the health, safety, welfare or property of persons, undrinkable for farm animals, poisonous or harmful to aquatic life, animals, birds or fish in or around the waters or unsuitable for use in irrigation, or obstructs or interferes with, or is likely to obstruct or interfere with persons in the exercise or enjoyment of any right in relation to the waters, and likewise polluting any drain, channel or gutter used or designed to receive or pass rainwater, floodwater or any water that is not polluted. "(POEO 1997).

Section 3 - Policy Reference

(4) Refer to the University's Environmental Management Policy and, with respect to Wildlife Management, refer to the University's Animals on Campus Policy.

Section 4 - Procedures

Part A - Waste Management Procedures

Purpose and Context

(5) The purpose of this procedure is to define the UWS processes for the management, handling, treatment and disposal of waste substances and materials generated on site. The procedure identifies the waste streams likely to be generated across the UWS campus sites and the methods of control required to ensure that legislative requirements are not breached.

(6) This procedure provides the generic process that should be used across all UWS campuses. Campus specific waste streams not covered in this Procedure should be notified to the Grounds and Environment Manager for document amendment.

(7) This procedure applies to all campuses and sites where waste is generated and includes the use of recycled effluent and stormwater for commercial farming operations as part of the Hawkesbury Water Recycling Scheme at the Hawkesbury Campus. This procedure addresses the management of liquid, solid and hazardous wastes.

(8) This procedure is referred to in the UWS Environmental Management System Manual as Environmental Operational Control Procedure (Part A).

Waste Management Hierarchy

(9) The objective of waste management is to minimise the impact of wastes on the environment, UWS staff, students, contractors and the public.

(10) UWS has adopted the following hierarchy of waste management options and requires all staff and students to subscribe to it:

  1. reduce and avoid waste generation (the most effective environmental solution may often be to avoid the generation of waste i.e. reduction);
  2. reuse and recycle (where further reduction is not practicable, products and materials can sometimes be used again, either for the same or a different purpose (i.e. reuse). If reusing material is not possible, then the next option is through recycling, composting or energy recovery from waste); and
  3. treat and dispose ( disposal is only the appropriate option if none of the above offers an appropriate solution.

Specific Waste Management Procedure s

(11) The following procedures relate to each of the key waste streams generated by UWS:

  1. general waste (office and kitchen waste that is solid and inert in nature including food waste);
  2. recyclable waste including:
    1. paper, and cardboard;
    2. cans, plastic containers and glass bottles;
    3. imaging consumables;
    4. mobile phones;
    5. green waste; and
    6. farming waste;
  3. hazardous waste (any waste of a chemical nature that is potentially hazardous including clinical waste and radioactive waste);
  4. maintenance and building waste; and
  5. asbestos, synthetic mineral fibre (SMF) and polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) waste.

General Waste Procedure

(12) This procedure applies to all UWS staff, students and contractors and covers all general waste streams (including office and kitchen waste that is solid and inert in nature) generated at all UWS sites and includes desk, kitchen, lecture room and laboratory waste bins.

(13) All general waste such as cans, bottles and plastic waste is to be placed in provided general waste bins. Putrescible waste (ie waste that may rot such as foodstuffs) is to be placed in bins located in kitchen and lunch room areas only.

(14) Contract cleaning staff empty general and paper recycling bins into outdoor bulk waste collection bins. General waste bins located in kitchen and lunch room areas and in high profile and high usage areas are emptied daily. General waste bins located in administrative areas are emptied three times a week or if more than two thirds full.

Recycling Procedures

Office Paper and Cardboard Procedure

(15) This procedure applies to all UWS office staff.

(16) Dedicated paper recycling bins are provided at all desks and in photocopier rooms. All paper suitable for recycling is to be placed in these paper recycling bins. This includes:

  1. photocopy paper;
  2. printing paper;
  3. note and writing paper;
  4. manila folders;
  5. envelopes; and
  6. text books.

(17) The following waste is not to be placed in paper recycling bins:

  1. waxed and un-waxed cardboard boxes;
  2. food scraps;
  3. food wrappers;
  4. plastics;
  5. glass;
  6. polystyrene;
  7. carbon paper; and
  8. metal.

(18) Confidential or sensitive material is to be shredded or alternatively placed in provided red Sulo Security Bins which are sent to a secure destruction facility then recycled.

(19) Contract cleaning staff empty desk, office and photocopier room paper recycling bins into dedicated blue recycling Sulo bins located within and outside of buildings. The bins are emptied daily in high profile and high use areas and three times weekly in administrative areas or when bins are more than two thirds full.

(20) Cardboard recycling bins are provided at centrally located areas at each UWS site.

(21) Cardboard boxes are to be flattened with small quantities left in office areas for removal by contract cleaning staff to designated bins and large quantities flattened and stored in a suitable area for collection. Collection can be arranged by telephone the Landscape Supervisor / Grounds Supervisor.

(22) Waxed cardboard is not suitable for recycling and is not to be placed in cardboard recycling bins. Polystyrene and plastic wrapping is to be removed from cardboard boxes prior to flattening.

Co-mingled Recycling of Cans, Plastic Containers and Bottles

(23) Recycling bays are being established to collect co-mingled aluminium cans, plastic containers, and glass bottles.

Imaging Consumables Recycling Procedure

(24) Recycling of imaging consumables is done via Print Services Unit and Ricoh or "Close the Loop" Cartridge Collection Program. For further information on Ricoh cartridge recycling please contact Print Services Unit at Kingswood.

(25) Close the Loop Limited is a leading global recycler of inkjet cartridges, laser toner cartridges, drum units, copier bottles and more. All cartridges in this program are recycled with zero waste to landfill.

(26) Close the Loop Collection Starter Kits contain 1 x box with lid, 16 x black plastic bin liners, 8 zip ties and an Information pack. Boxes should be situated near printing equipment and facilities and lined with 2 plastic bin liners.

(27) Only imaging consumables from any laser printer, inkjet printer, fax machines and photocopiers are to be placed in "Close the Loop" boxes. When the bag is full remove the liners (2 x black bags) and tie off with provided zip tie. Insert new liners for subsequent collection and disposal. Take the bag to a nominated courier collection point.

(28) "Close the Loop" pickup can be arranged by phoning 03 9 465 4855 or via the internet. Further box liners can be obtained by ordering a Consumables Pack from Close the Loop.

Mobile Phone Recycling Procedure

(29) This procedure applies to all UWS staff issued with a UWS mobile work phone.

(30) All mobile handsets, including batteries and accessories, are recyclable through the Mobile Phone Industry Recycling Program.

(31) Any broken/damaged or old UWS phones that are not repairable should be returned to the IT Accounts Unit. Please make sure that the sim card has been removed and the phone is marked dead or working (if partially working).

(32) Returned mobiles will be placed in the recycle bin for Vodafone to dispose of in an environmentally friendly manner.

(33) For all UWS staff requiring further information please refer to the University's Mobile Telephone Policy and other related documentation available via the Information Technology Services web site.

Farming Waste Recycling Procedure

(34) This procedure covers recyclable farming waste streams that stem from a number of UWS agricultural activities based primarily at the Hawkesbury campus. Compostable manure/green streams originate from UWS's beef, sheep, deer and equine activities.

(35) This procedure applies to those UWS staff working in outdoor farm laboratories at UWS Hawkesbury and applies only to those waste streams that occur when livestock are intensively housed. For free range livestock, manure is left to decompose in the paddocks.

(36) Manure is to be collected daily from stables and yards by UWS outdoor technical officers and stockpiled in a purpose built compound at the Equine Unit. When required it is to be collected by the officers from the Horticulture Unit, composted and reused as organic fertilizer.

Green Waste Recycling Procedure

(37) This procedure covers all green waste produced at UWS campuses. Green waste refers to urban landscape waste generally consisting of leaves, grass clippings, weeds, yard trimmings, wood waste, branches and stumps and other miscellaneous organic materials.

(38) Green wastes at UWS originate from the activities associated with grounds maintenance and landscaping, UWS Connect sports facilities maintenance and horticulture. This procedure applies to all UWS grounds and landscape staff and contractors.

(39) All mowers fitted with mulching decks are to leave mulched grass left where it is cut unless it is in windrows or impacts on high profile areas.

(40) Green waste resulting from tree lopping, pruning and removal is to be chipped on site and used as garden bed and tree mulch on site. This aids moisture retention and reduces potable water consumption for irrigation.

Hazardous Waste Operating Procedure

(41) This procedure applies to all hazardous wastes. Hazardous wastes are both solid and liquid wastes that have either the short or long term potential to harm human health and/or the environment. This procedure is in addition to promulgated Work Health and Safety Hazardous Waste Policies and Procedures.

(42) Waste streams that are identified by UWS Technical Officers as hazardous include:

  1. any waste that meets the criteria for assessment as a dangerous good;
  2. pharmaceuticals and poisons;
  3. declared chemical waste;
  4. biological waste;
  5. cytotoxic waste;
  6. clinical waste;
  7. sharps waste and
  8. liquid and non-liquid radioactive waste.

(43) From an environmental perspective, these types of waste will contaminate soil and waterways if sent to landfill and are governed by both WHS and environmental legislation and best practice guidelines.

Hazardous Liquid Waste

(44) The NSW Department of Environment and Climate Change has issued "Environmental Guidelines: Assessment, Classification & Management of Liquid and Non-liquid Wastes" in order to promote compliance with the Protection of the Environment Operations (Waste) Regulation 2005, made under the POEO Act, 1997.

(45) According to these guidelines and legislation liquid waste should be classified according to the following types and labelled and stored appropriately. Please refer to the Work Health and Safety Laboratory Safety Guidelines and Hazardous Substances and Dangerous Goods Procedures.

(46) Wastes (liquid) that are classified as hazardous include:

  1. Group A - Non-aqueous liquid and controlled aqueous liquid waste;
  2. Group B - Liquid food waste and liquid grease-trap waste resulting from the preparation or manufacturing of food;
  3. Group C - Liquid waste from human waste storage facilities or waste treatment devices and
  4. non-controlled aqueous liquid.

Maintenance Waste Operating Procedure

(47) This procedure applies to all UWS Office of Capital Works and Facilities (OCWF) Project Managers and Building Contractors and covers all building rubble resulting from demolition on all UWS campuses. Building rubble or building and demolition waste refers to all material (such as bricks, concrete, paper, plastics, glass, metal and timber) resulting from the demolition, erection, construction, refurbishment or alteration of buildings and/or infrastructure-type development.

(48) This operating procedure does not apply to asbestos waste.

(49) Office of Capital Works and Facilities Project Managers have a responsibility to recycle building rubble where practicable. Each site will be assessed on its own merits by the respective Project Manager and only as a last resort will mixed building rubble be sent as contaminated material to a mixed landfill.

(50) Building Contractors that include recycling of materials in the tender process should be given preferable consideration if all other evaluation factors are equal. Once the tender and approval for the demolition from council is granted, it is the building contractors' responsibility to dispose of all building rubble as per the terms of the contract.

(51) Brick, concrete, timber, steel and soil waste from building and demolition works are to be sorted on site by the Building Contractor and sent to dedicated recycling facilities.

Asbestos, SMF and PCB Material Waste Operating Procedure

(52) This procedure is to be read in conjunction with the UWS Work Health and Safety Policies and Procedures .

(53) This procedure applies to all UWS Office of Capital Works and Facilities Project Managers and Building Contractors.

(54) This procedure covers all asbestos and asbestos related materials, all synthetic mineral fibre (SMF) material and all polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) material waste.

(55) Asbestos waste means any waste that contains asbestos - the common name for a variety of silicate minerals within either the amphibole or the serpentine groups that are fibrous in structure and more or less resistant to acid and fire. Asbestos is classed both as a hazardous substance and a class 9 miscellaneous dangerous good - inhaling the fibres may cause asbestosis or lung cancer.

(56) SMF waste means any waste that contains SMFs - a general term used to describe man-made amorphous (non-crystalline) silicate fibres which are manufactured from minerals such as glass, rock, alumina and silica. SMFs are classified as a hazardous substance and a non-dangerous good. Short-term exposure to SMFs may result in skin, eye and upper respiratory tract irritation and long-term exposure is possibly carcinogenic.

(57) PCB waste means any waste that contains PCBs - a group of toxic organo-chlorine compounds. While they vary in form, PCBs usually occur as non-flammable oils in electrical equipment such as transformers and capacitors. PCBs are classified as a hazardous substance and a class 9 miscellaneous dangerous good. Exposure to leaking PCBs can result in a range of health problems from nausea and eye irritations to bronchitis, liver complications and chloracne. From an environmental perspective, PCBs are non-degradable and can therefore bio-accumulate in the food chain.

(58) Details of existing asbestos, SMF and PCB material locations in UWS buildings are kept in the Office of Capital Works and Facilities HAZMAT Register.

(59) Generally the majority of asbestos, SMF and PCB containing materials on UWS campuses have been assessed by an independent consultant to be in a stable condition with no remedial action required and does not present a significant health risk.

(60) Prior to undertaking any major or minor Capital Works, the Project Manager responsible for the project must check the Office of Capital Works and Facilities Hazardous Materials Register (HAZMAT) section of the Facilities Information Management System for the presence of asbestos, SMF and PCB containing materials. If any of these materials are present and require removal, the Project Manager is responsible for factoring into the administration of the tender process the procurement of an appropriately licensed contractor to safely remove and dispose of the material.

(61) The Project Manager is to manage the awarded contract and to ensure that the contractor is fulfilling the terms of the contract by conducting spot audits.

(62) The Project Manager is responsible for collating and filing all the necessary documentation including proof of correct disposal of asbestos, SMFs and PCB containing materials and is to notify the Manager Building Services once the job is completed of what substances have been removed in order to update the HAZMAT register.

(63) The Manager, Building Services is to maintain and update as required the HAZMAT register.

(64) All contractors must be licensed hazardous material removalists (if appropriate)* and must comply with all state and national environmental and work health and safety legislation and codes of practice.

(65) In situations where these materials need to be removed from UWS buildings no disturbance of these substances is to occur and discovery is to be immediately to the Manager, Building Services, Office of Capital Works and Facilities.

(66) The collection, handling and disposal of asbestos and asbestos waste by the contractor must strictly adhere to the requirements as stipulated in NSW Environmental Protection Authority's POEO (Waste) Regulation 2005. The contractor must forward the appropriate documentation from a licensed landfill site to the Project Manager.

(67) The collection, handling and disposal of SMF's by the contractor must strictly adhere to the requirements as stipulated in The National Standard for Synthetic Mineral Fibres [NOHSC:1004 (1990)] and National Code of Practice for the safe use of Synthetic Mineral Fibres [NOHSC:2006 (1990)].

(68) In NSW, SMF waste is accepted at nominated landfills and usually must be booked a day in advance. The building contractor who is responsible for the correct collection and disposal of SMF containing material must forward the appropriate documentation from a licensed landfill site to the Project Manager.

(69) Scheduled PCB material and waste must be transported in accordance with the Australian Dangerous Goods Code and any other legislative requirements. The contractor who is responsible for the correct collection and disposal of PCBs must forward the appropriate documentation from a licensed landfill site to the Project Manager.

(70) All workers involved in the transport of PCB wastes should be fully informed of the hazards of PCBs and trained in the correct procedures required for the safe transport of these hazardous materials. PCB waste is classified according to the level of concentration present in the PCB containing material.

Monitoring

(71) The Environmental Manager and the Grounds and Environment Manager are responsible for implementing a programme of waste audits to ensure that waste streams are being controlled and disposed of in accordance with this procedure and are in accord with legislative and regulatory requirements.

(72) The Waste Management Register will be reviewed by the UWS Environmental Manager and the Grounds and Environment Manager on a bi-annual basis to determine areas to be targeted for waste reduction or improved management.

Training

(73) Waste management training is included within the Environmental Awareness Training that is provided for UWS staff and students. Waste management responsibilities for contractors are covered in the compulsory UWS Work Health and Safety Contractor Induction course.

Records

(74) All waste management documents are held by the Environmental Manager and the Grounds and Environment Manager, and will be maintained in a manner according to the UWS Records Management Policy.

(75) Waste management documents include:

  1. waste management register;
  2. waste contracts;
  3. waste transfer notes (waste dockets from landfill);
  4. copies of waste contractors licences; and
  5. discharge and other consents.

Guidelines

Paper and Cardboard Recycling Timetables

(76) Contract cleaning staff transport blue paper recycling Sulo bins and red security Sulo bins to designated kerbside collection points and move them back to their original location. Paper recycling bins are collected weekly and security bins are collected fortnightly.

(77) The Visy Sulo paper recycling bins are taken out weekly to their collection points by the contract cleaners on the following days:

Campus Day
Bankstown Tuesday
Blacktown Thursday
Campbelltown Friday
Hawkesbury Tuesday
Kingswood Monday
Parramatta Tuesday
Werrington North Monday
Werrington South Monday

(78) Visy Security bins are collected fortnightly on a Monday at Bankstown, Blacktown and Campbelltown Campuses, on alternating Fridays at North and South Parramatta, and on Friday at all other Campuses.

Part B - Pesticide Management Procedures

Purpose and Context

(79) While pesticides can have economic, social, public health and environmental benefits there are significant risks associated with pesticide use. Many pesticides, due to their levels of toxicity, flammability or combustibility are classified as dangerous goods and/or hazardous substances.

(80) The purpose of this procedure is to define the UWS processes for the management of pesticides employed as a consequence of building maintenance, farming, horticultural and grounds maintenance activities conducted by the university. This procedure identifies the standard operating procedures for the safe handling, management, use and disposal of pesticides to ensure that legislative requirements are not breached.

(81) This procedures has been developed with reference to the following Statutes and Regulations (and associated amendments) and UWS Policies, Procedures and Guidelines:

  1. Pesticides Act 1999;
  2. Pesticides Regulation 1995;
  3. Pesticides Amendment (User Training) Regulation 2003;
  4. Protection of the Environment Operations Act (POEO Act) 1997;
  5. Work Health and Safety Act 2011;
  6. WorkCover NSW Code of Practice for Safe Use and Storage of Chemicals (Including Pesticides and Herbicides) in Agriculture;
  7. UWS Farm Safety Guidelines;
  8. UWS Guidelines for the Storage and Handling of Fertilisers and Fertiliser Blends; and
  9. UWS Hazardous Substances and Dangerous Goods Procedures.

(82) The principles embodied in this document are generic and are to be applied to the management of pesticides and herbicides by UWS staff and external contractors at all UWS sites. This procedure addresses the management of all types of liquid and solid pesticides and herbicides.

(83) While this procedure is primarily concerned with minimising the negative environmental impacts that the use of pesticides entails, it has also been written to ensure consistency with Work Health and Safety Regulations where relevant.

(84) This procedure is referred in the UWS Environmental Management System Manual as Environmental Operational Control Procedure (Part B).

Legislative Responsibilities

(85) The Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) currently require that all pesticides sold in Australia be approved and registered.

(86) In NSW, the Pesticides Act 1999 permits only the use of approved registered pesticides (unless specific authorisation is granted for the use of an unregistered pesticide). The Act also requires all users to adhere to the approved label or permit directions. The Pesticides Act also sets out current record keeping and training requirements. The Department of Environment and Climate Change (DECC) is the state agency that currently enforces the proper use of pesticides in NSW.

(87) This Act controls and regulates the use of pesticides in New South Wales. The focus of this legislation is to protect human health, the environment, property and trade while safeguarding responsible pesticide use.

(88) It is an offence under the Act: to:

  1. use a pesticide in a manner that:
    1. injures or is likely to injure another person;
    2. damages or is likely to damage any property of another person or harms any non-target animal or plant; and/or
    3. harms any animal or plant if there is no approved label or permit for the pesticide;
  2. wilfully or negligently use a pesticide in a manner that causes material harm to threatened species or protected animals;
  3. possess or use an unregistered pesticide without a permit;
  4. fail to read an approved label or permit before using a registered pesticide;
  5. use a registered pesticide contrary to the approved label;
  6. keep registered pesticides in a container without an approved label; and/or
  7. possess or use a restricted pesticide without being authorised by a certificate of competency or a pesticide control order.

(89) The Pesticides Amendment (User Training) Regulation 2003 requires users of pesticides for commercial and occupational purposes, or in connection with agricultural, farming or forestry operations to complete competency based training in pesticide use, transport, handling and storage and to make and keep records of pesticide use.

Pesticide Application Requirements

(90) Prior to undertaking pesticide spraying UWS staff and contractors should take a precautionary approach in recognition of the limited knowledge of environmental consequences resulting from the widespread use, transport, persistence and degradation impacts of pesticide application.

(91) Persons engaged in pesticide transport, handling, storage, preparation and application on UWS property are required to:

  1. be qualified in accordance with requirements of the Pesticides Amendment (User Training) Regulation 2003;
  2. ensure that a Register of Hazardous Chemicals is available and up to date;
  3. ensure that Material Safety Data Sheets are available, current and not more than five years old;
  4. have access to an approved Spill Kit and equipment required to clean up any spill;
  5. ascertain that climatic conditions are conducive to applying the pesticide, taking into account wind drift, run off and rain;
  6. ensure that the required and approved signage is prominently displayed;
  7. wear the stipulated PPE as promulgated on the MSDS;
  8. ensure that people, animals, water bodies, vehicles etc will not come into contact with pesticide application operations;
  9. ensure that the pesticides are used in a manner that does not unreasonably interfere with the quality of life, health or property of other people. Effective communication is a good way to minimise conflict between pesticide users and neighbours;
  10. ensure that the pesticides used do not move beyond the targeted application area;
  11. comply with legislative requirements and follow the label instructions to ensure that pesticides are transported, stored, mixed and used effectively and do not have a negative impact upon the environment, health, safety and trade. Always consider the circumstances when applying pesticides;
  12. ensure that containers and apparatus are thoroughly cleaned after use and residue is collected in an approved container for legislatively compliant disposal;
  13. enter details of the pesticide application in the Pesticide Application Register; and
  14. consider an Integrated Pest Management Approach as a means of controlling pests without relying totally on chemical insecticides.

(92) From an environmental perspective inappropriate use of pesticides, particularly those classified as dangerous, hazardous or poisonous, can lead to environmental harm. Different levels of harm (ranging from nuisance to serious) can arise from the incorrect use of pesticides. UWS staff and contractors engaged in pesticide use are to ensure that pesticides do not:

  1. enter stormwater systems, inland waters, ground water, estuarine or marine waters;
  2. pollute soils outside the target area;
  3. impact on non-target organisms, including plants or animals or damage ecosystem functions;
  4. harm turf, gardens or crops of neighbours due to spray drift;
  5. cause excessive noise during pesticide application or subjecting neighbours to spray drift that causes discomfort, illness or nuisance due to odour, irritation or toxicity;
  6. contribute to the development of resistance in pests; and
  7. contaminate agricultural produce.

Recordkeeping

Pesticide Registers

(93) A register is a listing of all hazardous substances in the workplace. This includes a list of the chemicals kept in a central store or a pest control vehicle. WorkCover NSW recommends that the minimum information which must be included in a register is a list of all hazardous substances used or produced in the workplace, and the relevant Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS).

Pesticide Usage Records

(94) The Pesticides Amendment (Records) Regulation, part of the Pesticides Act 1999 and in force from July 2002, requires that the use of pesticides must be correctly recorded with the following information:

  1. who applied the pesticide;
  2. what was applied; when, how and where it was applied;
  3. what it was applied to; and
  4. how much was applied, and, if the pesticide was applied outdoors by spray equipment, an estimate of wind speed and direction.

(95) The record must be made within 24 hours of use and kept for three years. Environment Protection Authority officers may check these records at any reasonable time and penalties may apply if the records have not been kept in accordance with the new law.

Monitoring

(96) The Pesticide Application Register will be reviewed by the Environmental Manager and the Grounds and Environment Manager on a quarterly/six monthly basis to determine areas to be targeted for pesticide reduction or improved management techniques.

Training

(97) The Pesticides Act 1999 makes training compulsory for commercial users of pesticides. A person who is 'trained' has a qualification that shows that they have achieved a specific level of competency in pesticide use. Holders of Farmcare, ChemCert or SMARTtrain qualifications are considered already qualified under the Act. The qualification remains valid for five years from the date it was completed. People who are qualified have to be re-assessed every five years.

Guidelines

Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)

(98) An MSDS provides information on hazardous substances additional to that on a label. Methods to control exposure and exposure standards can also be found in the MSDS. An MSDS for a substance provides information on:

  1. identification;
  2. health hazard information;
  3. precautions for use at application strength, including the exposure standard;
  4. safe storage and handling information;
  5. all the hazardous ingredients, not just the "active constituent";
  6. where a chemical may release another hazardous substance during normal use such as when reacting with other common materials or when heated; and
  7. emergency procedures (to assist planning).

(99) Use the MSDS for guidance on the safe use and storage of chemicals. Other persons working in the area where the chemical is being used may also need to see the MSDS.

Part C - Emergency Preparedness and Response Procedures

Purpose and Context

(100) To effectively manage UWS's activities, potential generic emergency situations that have a negative environmental impact have been identified and appropriate responses documented. This procedure addresses reasonably foreseeable environmental emergency situations that could arise through these activities. However, it must be borne in mind that potential emergencies and responses are specifically related to site conditions and therefore generic response procedures need to be adapted to each project.

(101) Responsibility for identification of potential emergencies, adaptation of generic response procedures and implementation of response procedures is at a number of levels.

(102) The procedures in this document have been developed with reference to the following Statutes and Regulations (and associated amendments) and UWS Policies, Procedures and Guidelines:

  1. NSW Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 (POEO Act);
  2. NSW Protection of the Environment Operations Amendment Bill 2005;
  3. NSW Environmentally Hazardous Chemicals Act 1985;
  4. NSW Environmental Protection (Water Quality) Policy 2003;
  5. NSW Workl Health and Safety Act 2011 (WHS Act);
  6. UWS Accident, Injury, Incident, Hazard Reporting and Investigation Policy;
  7. UWS OHS Emergency Management Program; and
  8. UWS Dangerous Weapons Policy.

(103) This procedure has been developed for use across all UWS campuses.

(104) This procedure will review and identify all foreseeable emergency situations for environmental releases and detail generic emergency responses to these situations. Emergency preparedness and responses will outline:

  1. UWS Emergency Contact Numbers and Equipment;
  2. UWS Emergency Procedures;
  3. Fire - protected areas and farmlands;
  4. Hazardous spills and/or leaks; and
  5. Explosions - gas leaks etc.

(105) This procedure is referred in the UWS Environmental Management System Manual as Environmental Operational Control Procedure (Part C).

(106) UWS Work Health and Safety Unit has a comprehensive Emergency Preparedness Program that outlines a framework to enable line managers, in consultation with other stakeholders, to establish effective emergency management plans that are appropriate for their respective areas of responsibility. These procedures have been developed with this framework in mind. In addition, this website has a number of generic emergency management instructions that the reader is referred to.

Legislative Responsibilities

(107) The Protection of the Operations Act 1997 (POEO Act) is the key piece of environment protection legislation administered by the NSW Department of Environment and Climate Change (DECC) . Under this legislation an organisation has a duty of care to notify the DECC where "a pollution incident occurs in the course of an activity so that material harm to the environment is caused or threatened." The NSW Ozone Protection Act 1989 and NSW Ozone Protection Regulation 1997 was implemented to enable the state to meet its obligations under the Montreal Protocol to phase out production and consumption of ozone depleting substances including CFCs. It is a Tier 1 offence under section 117 of the NSW Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 to wilfully or negligently cause certain ozone-depleting substances to be emitted into the atmosphere contrary to the Regulation in a manner that harms or is likely to harm the environment.

Emergency contact numbers/equipment

(108) This following section is as per Work Health and Safety Unit.

(109) The emergency telephone number is ext 2300.

(110) This number when dialled from an internal UWS phone will connect directly to security staff on the campus on which the caller is located.

(111) Emergency internal telephones will only be used in emergency situations and are strategically located throughout the University. To obtain assistance simply lift the handset and dial '2300'.

(112) When using an internal telephone to phone the emergency services ('000') the caller must first dial '0' in order to obtain an outside line.

(113) There will be a slight delay when dialling the '000' emergency number before the phone begins ringing.

(114) The UWS emergency vehicles contain equipment which can be used in an emergency. Security staff are responsible for ensuring that the equipment is carried in the vehicle at all times and is maintained in a serviceable condition.

UWS Emergency Procedures

(115) Key UWS Emergency Procedures addressing fire, evacuation, bomb threats, chemical and gas spills, medical emergencies and loss of essential services have been documented by the OHS Risk Management Unit and produced in poster format. This poster (UWS OHS Emergency Procedures) has been widely distributed throughout all public buildings and offices across all campuses.

(116) The UWS Emergency Management Program contains key duties and responsibilities for staff undertaking first response type roles in relation to emergencies on and around any UWS campus.

Fire and Explosions

(117) In case of emergencies which typically may include fire, explosion, leakage of noxious gases/liquids etc: CALL '000', then:

  1. remain calm;
  2. quickly assess the extent of the emergency;
  3. notify personnel in the immediate area;
  4. do not attempt any action that would jeopardise your safety or the safety of any other person;
  5. contact the University's Security personnel on ext 2300 and provide the following information:
    1. who is calling and your present location;
    2. the specific nature and location of the emergency;
    3. the phone extension you are calling from; and
    4. if known, the nature and extent of any injuries to persons;
  6. if it is safe to do so, and your assistance is not required at the emergency site, remain at the phone you are calling from until assistance arrives;
  7. when instructed to evacuate the area, proceed in a calm, orderly manner to the designated safe areas;
  8. do not assemble near any building or other structure;
  9. take your personal belongings eg coat, handbag, briefcase with you;
  10. don't lock doors as you leave;
  11. under no circumstances re-enter the buildings until authorised to do so by the Emergency Controller or their representative; and
  12. in the interests of your own personal safety and the safety of others please ensure that you know the:
    1. emergency management plan for your local area;
    2. location of the building emergency exits; and
    3. location of emergency equipment e.g. first aid kits, fire extinguishers etc as this knowledge may be critical in an emergency situation.

Fire - Protected Areas and Farmland

(118) For fire management in protected areas please refer to UWS' Remnant Bushland and Biodiversity Management Program in the UWS Environmental Management Plan which has as one of its actions plans to develop both a hazard and ecological fire management plan.

Hazardous Spills and Leaks

(119) There are a number of areas that have the potential to make a negative environmental impact in terms of spills and leaks:

  1. Petrol spills;
  2. Polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) leaks;
  3. Chlorine spills;
  4. Diesel spills; and
  5. Oil spills including hydraulic oil, engine oil and brake fluids.

(120) See Environmental Operational Control Procedure Part D Emergency Spill Response Procedure and OHS UWS Emergency Procedures.

Part D - Emergency Spill Response Procedure

Purpose and Context

(121) While accidental spills and leaks can occur UWS recognises that their impacts need be minimised and that the appropriate procedures are in place to protect both human health and the environment.

(122) The purpose of this procedure is to define the UWS processes for the emergency management of hazardous spills and leaks as a consequence of general business activities conducted across all spheres of the university. This procedure applies to all UWS staff, students, contractors and lessees and has been developed for use across all UWS campuses.

(123) The procedure identifies the standard operating procedures for the safe containment and disposal of hazardous spills and leaks to ensure that UWS's environmental responsibility and legislative requirements are met.

(124) The procedures in this document have been developed with reference to the following:

  1. NSW Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 (POEO Act);
  2. NSW Protection of the Environment Operations Amendment Bill 2005;
  3. NSW Environmentally Hazardous Chemicals Act 1985;
  4. NSW Environmental Protection (Water Quality) Policy 2003;
  5. NSW Ozone Protection Regulation 1997;
  6. Australian Chlorofluorocarbon Management Strategy 2001;
  7. NSW Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (WHS Act);
  8. The Australian Dangerous Goods Code (ADG Code); and
  9. Manufacturer's Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS).

(125) This procedure addresses the emergency management spill response to the major and most likely types of hazardous pollutants on UWS grounds such as: petroleum; diesel; oil lubricants and products; chlorine; polychlorinated biphenyl (PCBs), chemical spills in laboratories; Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) leaks and gas leaks.

(126) This procedure applies to both liquid and gaseous substances.

(127) While this procedure is primarily concerned with minimising the negative environmental impacts that an accidental spill or leak may entail, it has also been written to ensure consistency with Work Health and Safety Regulation where relevant.

(128) There are three major ways that a hazardous spill or leak can impact on the environment:

  1. Water pollution - according to the NSW Environmental Protection Authority stormwater pollution is the biggest source of water pollution in urban areas. In Sydney, the cumulative effect of oil spills results in 60,000 litres of oil washed from the road network down the stormwater drain after heavy rain. Avoiding stormwater pollution is thus a major environmental consideration in the development of these procedures. Please note that under the POEO Act 1997 it is against the law for a person to pollute any waters.
  2. Air pollution - toxic emissions released to air from any fires that result from major hazardous spills are also of environmental concern because of the possibility of exposure to air-borne contaminants as is the release of ozone depleting substances.
  3. Land contamination - major hazardous spills also run the risk of land contamination.

(129) This procedure is referred in the UWS Environmental Management System Manual as Environmental Operational Control Procedure (Part D).

Legislative Responsibilities

(130) The Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 (POEO Act) is the key piece of environment protection legislation administered by the NSW Department of Environment and Climate Change (DECC).

(131) The Act has a three tier penalty regime for Environmental Offences:

  1. Tier 1 offences are considered the most serious offences which include the wilful or negligent disposal of waste causing or likely to cause harm to the environment (section 115), wilfully or negligently causing a substance to leak, spill or otherwise escape in a manner that harms or is likely to harm the environment (section 116), and the wilful or negligent emission of an ozone-depleting substance in breach of the Ozone Protection Regulations in a manner that harms or is likely to harm the environment (section 117 POEO Act, 1997). Under the POEO Amendment Bill 2005 the penalties for these offences have been increased to up to $5 million for corporations and $1 million and/or seven years gaol for individuals.
  2. Tier 2 offences consist of all other offences under the Act and regulations, including water pollution, air pollution, land pollution (eg littering) and noise pollution offences. These offences are generally categorised as 'strict liability' offences i.e. the prosecution is not required to prove intent. The maximum penalties under the Amendment Bill 2005 for Tier 2 offences are up to $1 million in the case of a corporation and $250,000 for individuals. Daily penalties apply to continuing offences. Under this tier it is also an offence to:
    1. emit offensive odour from scheduled activities;
    2. unlawfully transport waste; and
    3. failure to comply with the duty to notify the EPA or relevant council certain pollution incidents where "material harm" to the environment is threatened or caused. (This duty to notify applies to the person or employee carrying on the activity and the occupier of premises where the incident occurs).
  3. Tier 3 offences are dealt with by penalty notices or 'on-the-spot fines'. These notices impose a fine that can be paid or can be defended in court.

(132) Under this legislation an organisation has a duty of care to notify the EPA where "a pollution incident occurs in the course of an activity so that material harm to the environment is caused or threatened." This regime obviously makes it in any organisations interests to be vigilant in all areas of environmental management.

Part E - Generic Spill Response Procedure

(133) In the event of a major spill on any UWS campus Security/Emergency must be immediately notified on extension 2300. A Security representative will attend the scene of the spill as soon as possible.

(134) Depending on the circumstances and nature of the spill the NSW Fire Brigade should also be called (000) by either those responsible for the spill if there is an immediate fire or pollution risk or will be called by Security upon arriving and assessing the situation. When it is safe to do so, the generic procedure to follow is as follows.

Protective Action Zones

(135) In the case of major hazardous spills, protective action zones will need to be established. If the spill occurs in an outside environment note the wind direction and then establish the protective action zone . Specific distances will depend on the material spilled and are detailed in each specific operating procedure.

(136) Steps to take to create a protective action zone are as follows:

  1. Establish the initial isolation distance from the spill and direct all persons to move, in a crosswind direction, away from the spill to the distance specified.
  2. Establish the protective action zone downwind distance relevant to the material spilled. For practical purposes, the protective action zone is a square, whose length and width are the same as the downwind distance.
  3. Initiate protective actions (i.e. steps taken to preserve the health and safety of both the public and responders to the incident) to the extent possible, beginning with those closest to the spill site and working away from the site in the downwind direction.

Part F - Specific Emergency Spill Response Operating Procedures

(137) Specific Emergency Spill Response Operating Procedures are outlined below for the following:

  1. Petrol leaks spills;
  2. Polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) leaks and minor spills;
  3. Chlorine spills;
  4. Diesel leaks and spills;
  5. Oil leaks and spills;
  6. Laboratory spills;
  7. CFC leaks; and
  8. Gas leaks.

(138) Please note, unless otherwise specified all responses are as per MSDS instructions for each material as found on Chemwatch.

Petrol Leak and Spill Response Operating Procedure

(139) This operating procedure applies to both leaded and unleaded petroleum products (also commonly referred to as motor fuel and/or gasoline) across all UWS campuses. Both leaded and unleaded petrol are classified as a hazardous substance and a Class 3 dangerous good according to the criteria of National Occupational Health and Safety Code and the Australian Dangerous Good code. Unleaded petrol is a lead free motor fuel used for internal combustion engines, 2-stroke and 4-stroke engines. It has a flashpoint of less than or equal to 30 degrees Celsius and a boiling point of greater than 30 degrees Celsius. It is anticipated that the majority of petrol related incidents will relate to spills and leaks from vehicles.

Petrol Leaks

(140) Petrol leaking from vehicles can occur particularly during hot weather when heat expands the petrol in fuel tanks. Leaking petrol is a serious risk and care should be taken with petrol spills to prevent the danger of ignition or explosion (OFM, Griffith University).

(141) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a petrol leak:

  1. remove all ignition sources;
  2. notify security on ext 2300 if any petrol leaks are identified;
  3. security will attempt to contact owner of vehicle; and
  4. as per minor spill procedure.
Minor Petrol Spills (less than 200 litres) - Call Fire Brigade '000'

(142) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a minor petrol spill:

  1. remove all ignition sources;
  2. clean up all spills immediately;
  3. avoid breathing vapours and contact with skin and eyes;
  4. control personal contact by using protective equipment;
  5. contain and absorb small quantities with vermiculite or other absorbent material;
  6. wipe up; and
  7. collect residues in a flammable waste container.
Major Petrol Spills (greater than 200 litres) - Call Fire Brigade '000'

(143) Notify Security on extension 2300 internally as the spill may be violently or explosively reactive.

(144) Establish an isolation distance of 25 metres and downwind protection distance of 300 metres as indicated in the Protective Action Zone Diagram.

(145) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a major petrol spill:

  1. Clear area of personnel and move upwind.
  2. Wait to Fire Brigade arrive and advise them of location and nature of hazard.
  3. Wear breathing apparatus plus protective gloves.
  4. Prevent, by any means available, spillage from entering drains or water course.
  5. No smoking, naked lights or ignition sources.
  6. Increase ventilation.
  7. Stop leak if safe to do so.
  8. Water spray or fog may be used to disperse / absorb vapour.
  9. Contain spill with sand, earth or vermiculite.
  10. Use only spark-free shovels and explosion proof equipment.
  11. Collect recoverable product into labelled containers for recycling.
  12. Absorb remaining product with sand, earth or vermiculite.
  13. Collect solid residues and seal in labelled drums for disposal.
  14. Wash area and prevent runoff into drains.
  15. If contamination of drains or waterways occurs, advise emergency services.

Polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) Leak and Spill Response Operating Procedure

(146) This operating procedure applies to metal capacitors containing polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) material that are at Hawkesbury Campus, Parramatta North Campus, Parramatta South Campus, Kingswood Campus and Westmead Campus. All of the capacitors containing PCBs have been assessed by a professional and independent survey as "in a good and stable condition at the time of inspection with no action currently required."

(147) PCBs are classified as a hazardous substance and a class 9 miscellaneous dangerous good. Exposure to leaking PCBs can result in a range of health problems from nausea and eye irritations to bronchitis, liver complications and chloracne.

(148) From an environmental perspective, PCBs are recognised internationally to be a major environmental pollutant. They are non-degradable and their persistence can cause ecological damage via water pollution and bio-accumulation in the food chain. The loss of these materials to the environment must be avoided at all costs. Given the limited amount of PCBs on UWS campuses there is not enough PCB material to constitute a "major" spill. As such this procedure relates only to PCB leaks and minor spills.

PCB Leaks and Minor Spills - Call Fire Brigade '000"

(149) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a PCB leak or minor spill:

  1. Avoid breathing vapours and contact with skin and eyes.
  2. Wear protective clothing, impervious gloves and safety glasses.
  3. Contain spill with sand, earth or vermiculite.
  4. Wipe up and absorb small quantities with vermiculite or other absorbent material.
  5. Place spilled material in clean, dry, sealable, labelled container.
  6. Call Capital Works and Facilities Manager Electrical Services to arrange disposal.

Chlorine Leak and Spill Response Operating Procedure

(150) This operating procedure applies to the chlorine chemical stores and chlorinated water in UWS swimming pools at Hawkesbury and Blacktown campuses. Both UWS Hawkesbury and Blacktown campuses have stores of sodium hypochlorite - liquid pool chlorine. Sodium Hypochlorite is used for the purification of water and as a swimming pool disinfectant. It is classified as a hazardous substance and a Class 8 (corrosive) dangerous good. As an alkaline and a corrosive, sodium hypochlorite will damage living tissue, goods or equipment on contact by chemical action. It is not highly flammable but is considered to be an "ecotoxin" i.e. a toxicant that can adversely affect ecosystems.

Minor Chlorine Spills (less then 200 litres) Call Fire Brigade '000'

(151) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a minor chlorine spill:

  1. Avoid breathing vapours and contact with skin and eyes.
  2. Wear protective clothing, impervious gloves and safety glasses.
  3. Neutralise with sodium metabisulfite or sodium thiosulfate (to minimise evolution of chlorine gas).
  4. Wipe up and absorb small quantities with vermiculite or other absorbent material.
  5. Place in suitable containers for disposal.
  6. Wash spill area with large quantities of water.
Major Chlorine Spills (greater then 200 litres) - Call Fire Brigade '000'

(152) Notify Security on extension 2300 internally.

(153) Establish an isolation distance of 25 metres and downwind protection distance of 250 metres as indicated in the Protective Action Zone Diagram.

(154) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a major chlorine spill:

  1. Clear area of personnel and move upwind.
  2. Wait to Fire Brigade arrive & advise them of location and nature of hazard.
  3. Wear full body protective clothing with breathing apparatus.
  4. Prevent, by any means available, spillage from entering drains or water courses;
  5. Increase ventilation.
  6. Stop leak if safe to do so.
  7. Contain spill with sand, earth or vermiculite.
  8. Collect recoverable product into labelled containers for recycling.
  9. Neutralise with sodium metabisulfite or sodium thiosulfate.
  10. Absorb remaining product with sand, earth or vermiculite.
  11. Collect residues and seal in labelled drums for disposal.
  12. Wash spill area with large quantities of water.
  13. After clean up operations, decontaminate and launder all protective clothing and equipment before storing and re-using.

Diesel Leak and Spill Response Operating Procedure

(155) This operating procedure applies to all diesel spills and leaks across all UWS campuses. Diesel is synonymous with a number of terms including: "automotive diesel fuel oil"; "distillate dieselene"; "diesel oil"; "diesel fuel"; "diesel oil, light" and "summer diesel". Diesel is a distillate fuel suitable for use as a fuel for trucks, ships and other automotive equipment. It is classified as a hazardous substances and a non-dangerous good. Diesel is stored in bulk in a number of areas at UWS for use in farming equipment. Diesel is also transported onto campuses by semi-trailers.

Diesel Leaks and Minor Spills (less than 200 litres) - Call Fire Brigade '000'

(156) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a minor diesel spill:

  1. Remove all ignition sources.
  2. Clean up all spills immediately.
  3. Avoid breathing vapours and contact with skin and eyes.
  4. Control personal contact by using protective equipment.
  5. Contain and absorb spill with sand, earth, inert material or vermiculite.
  6. Wipe up.
  7. Place in a suitable labelled container for waste disposal.
Major Diesel Spills (greater than 200 litres) - Call Fire Brigade '000'

(157) Notify Security on extension 2300 internally.

(158) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a major diesel spill:

  1. Clear area of personnel and move upwind.
  2. Slippery when spilt.
  3. Wait to Fire Brigade arrive and advise them of location and nature of hazard.
  4. Wear breathing apparatus plus protective gloves.
  5. Prevent, by any means available, spillage from entering drains or water course.
  6. No smoking, naked lights or ignition sources.
  7. Increase ventilation.
  8. Stop leak if safe to do so.
  9. Water spray or fog may be used to disperse / absorb vapour.
  10. Contain or absorb with sand, earth or vermiculite.
  11. Collect recoverable product into labelled containers for recycling.
  12. Collect solid residues and seal in labelled drums for disposal.
  13. Wash area with detergent and water and prevent runoff into drains.
  14. After clean up operations, decontaminate and launder all protective clothing and equipment before storing and re-using.
  15. If contamination of drains or waterways occurs, advise emergency services.

Oil Spill/Leak Response Operating Procedure

(159) This operating procedure applies to all oil spills and leaks across all UWS campuses. "Oil" is used as a generic term and refers to all hydraulic oil, engine oil and brake fluid. All these oils are classified as a non hazardous substance and a non dangerous good according to the criteria of National Occupational Health and Safety Code and the Australian Dangerous Good code.

Oil Leaks and Minor Spills (less than 200 litres)

(160) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a minor oil spill:

  1. Remove all ignition sources.
  2. Clean up all spills immediately.
  3. Avoid breathing vapours and contact with skin and eyes.
  4. Control personal contact by using protective equipment.
  5. Contain and absorb spill with sand, earth, inert material or vermiculite.
  6. Wipe up.
  7. Place in a suitable labelled container for waste disposal.
Major Diesel Spills (greater than 200 litres) - Call Fire Brigade '000'

(161) Notify Security on ext 2300.

(162) These are the protective actions that need to be taken in the event of a major oil spill:

  1. Remove all ignition sources, but only if safe to do so.
  2. Clear area of personnel.
  3. Wait to Fire Brigade arrive and advise them of location and nature of hazard.
  4. Control personal contact by using protective equipment as required.
  5. Prevent spillage from entering drains or water ways.
  6. Contain spill with sand, earth or vermiculite.
  7. Collect recoverable product into labelled containers for recycling.
  8. Absorb remaining product with sand, earth or vermiculite and place in appropriate containers for disposal.
  9. Wash area and prevent runoff into drains or waterways.
  10. If contamination of drains or waterways occurs, advise emergency services.

Laboratory Spill/Leak Response Operating Procedure

(163) This operating procedure applies to all spills and leaks across all UWS laboratories.

(164) In laboratories the definition of minor and major spills changes substantially.

Chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) Leak Response Operating Procedure

(165) Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) are man made gas compounds that contain carbon, chlorine and fluorine. As gases at room temperature CFCs are easily liquefied by compression - they are also stable and non-toxic. Prior to 1989 CFCs have been widely used as working fluids in refrigerators and air conditioners, propellants in spray cans for paints etc and foaming agents.

(166) CFCs are also one of the most ozone depleting substances available. Due to their stability they remain in the atmosphere for a significant amount of time after release - it is estimated that one chlorine atom can destroy over 100,000 molecules.

(167) CFCs are still used at UWS in the universities air conditioning systems. CFC leaks can be detected two ways. If an air conditioning system is not functioning the maintenance contractor is called and any leaks can be identified and rectified. The second is via the monthly routine maintenance checks conducted by the contractor.

Gas Spill/Leak Response Operating Procedure

(168) UWS has a number of different types of gases in store across its campuses. Gases which have been compressed, liquefied or dissolved under pressure are classified as a Class 2 dangerous good. Under this classification there are three categories of gases:

  1. Class 2.1 - Flammable Gases: eg hydrogen, acetylene, liquefied petroleum gas (LP Gas);
  2. Class 2.2 - Non-flammable, non-toxic gases: eg oxygen, nitrogen air and argon; and
  3. Class 2.3 - Toxic gases: gases liable to cause death or serious injury to human health if inhaled - e.g. ammonia, chlorine, carbon dioxide.

(169) In the case of a gas spill and /or leak the procedure to follow is as per UWS Emergency Procedures.

  1. Alert people in immediate vicinity.
  2. Notify security on ext 2300 stating exact location and nature of spill/leak.
  3. Only attempt to contain the spill/leak if you are aware of the appropriate safe handling procedures for the spill.
  4. Send someone to nearest road to direct emergency services.
  5. Evacuate danger areas (remain upwind) and proceed to safe assembly area.
  6. Co-operate with emergency wardens and services on their arrival.
  7. Do not re-enter buildings until instructed by emergency controller.
  8. Do not attempt any action that puts your life or anyone else's life in danger.

Part G - Wildlife Information and Procedures

Purpose and Context

(170) As Sydney's most geographically dispersed university, UWS has a number of varying urban, quasi rural and agricultural landscapes to manage. Inherent in all these landscapes are both native and non-native wildlife populations.

(171) The purpose of this procedure is to document the University's methods on managing these populations to ensure compliance with conservation and animal welfare objectives while at the same time safeguarding the health and safety of all UWS students, employees and visitors.

(172) This procedure has been developed for use across all UWS campuses.

(173) The procedures in this document have been developed with reference to the following:

  1. NSW National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974
  2. NSW Department of Environmental and Conservation - National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS)
  3. NSW NPWS Policy: Management of Native Birds that Show Aggression to People (August 2003)
  4. NSW Wildlife Information and Rescue Service (WIRES)

(174) This procedure is referred in the UWS Environmental Management System Manual as Environmental Operational Control Procedure (Part E).

Legislative

(175) All native mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians and many species of native plants are protected in NSW by the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 and under this act it is an offence to harm any protected fauna. The only exemptions to this Act relate to certain native birds in specified parts of New South Wales where they are deemed to be either agricultural or pastoral pests.

(176) Under the NSW, National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 the NPWS Head Office Wildlife Licensing has the authority to issue a general licence (s120) and an occupiers licence (s121) to authorise the harm of a specified number and species of native wildlife.

(177) When a native species is deemed to pose a danger to either the health or safety of the UWS human community, contractors are required to have the appropriate s120 licence. If UWS is to carry out the destruction of native wildlife an s121 licence is required.

(178) Any destruction of native wildlife is to be carried out as humanely as possible.

(179) The objective of this document is to outline the management response for:

  1. snakes and reptiles;
  2. nesting and seasonally aggressive native birds;
  3. possums; and
  4. non-native wildlife.

Snake and Reptile Information

(180) UWS recognises that snakes and reptiles are an intrinsic part the Australian landscape and have a role to play in many different types of ecosystems.

(181) All native Australian snakes and reptiles are protected by law in NSW and it is an offence to harm or kill them.

(182) The most commonly encountered snakes in Western Sydney are the red-bellied black snake and the eastern brown snake. Both are venomous and potentially dangerous to humans. It is best to treat all snakes as if they are venomous and if one is sighted to keep at a safe distance and do not disturb it.

(183) In summer snakes are more active and have been found at all UWS campuses but are especially prevalent at Blacktown, Campbelltown, Hawkesbury and Penrith. Individuals working and/or walking in bushland areas are advised to wear sturdy boots and long pants and to avoid dense undergrowth where visibility is reduced.

Management Procedures

(184) Snakes are to be managed in accordance with the University's Animals on Campus Policy (Part E), which generally requires individuals to leave snakes alone. The provisions of that policy should also be applied to reptiles. Individuals should note that snakes/reptiles are often timid and will not become aggressive unless provoked. Statistics show that over 90% of people who are bitten by snakes are trying to kill or catch them. Accordingly, individuals should maintain a safe distance where a snake/reptile is sighted.

Nesting and Seasonally Aggressive Native Birds Management Procedure

(185) The University has a responsibility to ensure both the wellbeing of both its bird and human populations.

(186) Across UWS campuses the following native bird species can exhibit seasonally aggressive behaviour which is usually associated with nesting:

  1. Magpies;
  2. Kookaburras;
  3. Butcherbirds; and
  4. Masked Lapwings (Plovers).

(187) This seasonal behaviour often occurs during spring and can be intimidating. While most birds only swoop and call loudly, a small proportion of birds may actually come into contact with people in an attempt to deter the perceived threat to their nests and young.

(188) Where possible, UWS will seek to educate its community about these situations, display temporary signage where appropriate and encourage UWS staff and students to avoid nesting locations during the season where possible via notification by email.

(189) In exceptional circumstances and in line with the NSW NPWS policy UWS considers that a bird(s) can be assessed as a risk to public safety and dangerous when it:

  1. has/have caused actual personal injury or damage;
  2. attacks the head (striking from the ground upwards and from the front of the person);
  3. hovers above the head for a prolonged period, attacking the head and face;
  4. constantly swoops, or attacks in an area frequented by elderly and/or disabled persons and/or young children;
  5. swoops, or attacks in a location that might endanger the victim through their response (e.g. along a busy road).

(190) If any UWS students and/or staff consider a bird to be dangerous please contact Campus Security for an assessment. Alternatively, the Environmental Manager can be contacted at the beginning of the nesting season (August) to discuss any other concerns.

(191) The following species are found nesting around UWS campus buildings:

  1. Fairy Martins;
  2. Welcome Swallows; and
  3. Pigeons (non-native please see pest management).

(192) Nesting birds around buildings and eaves pose a number of other problems for the human populations that cohabit with them.

(193) If any UWS students and/or staff consider a nesting bird to be a threat to their health please contact the Environmental Manager or the Manager, Work Health and Safety Unit for an assessment.

Possum Management Procedure

(194) UWS has resident brush tail possum populations at Hawkesbury, Penrith and Campbelltown campuses. Possums have adapted well to urbanisation and can take up residence in the roof of buildings.

(195) In cases such as these UWS recommends, where possible, waiting until the possum has vacated the area and blocking access. If this is not successful WIRES can trap the possum and release it outside the building.

(196) UWS does not recommend relocating possums for the following reasons:

  1. Relocating is rarely successful as possums are territorial and if the offending possum is released in another possums' area it will likely be chased on.
  2. A resident possum discourages other possums from taking up residence which often happens in an area known for its possum populations.

(197) UWS does not recommend feeding possums but encourages them to fend for themselves. If a possum is causing a problem contact the appropriate Facilities Services Officer to arrange for appropriate management action.

Non-Native Wildlife Pest Management Procedure

(198) UWS has the following non-native wildlife populations on campus:

  1. Sparrows
  2. Pigeons
  3. Starlings
  4. Rats and Mice
  5. Dogs and Cats

(199) Where non-native wildlife populations are considered to be pests (i.e. pose a threat) they should be managed in accordance with the University's Animals on Campus Policy. Additional advice should also be obtained from the relevant Facilities Services Officer Office of Capital Works and Facilities, with respect to contracting the services of a licensed pest controller to deal with specific problems (e.g. infestation, spread of disease).

(200) UWS advocates the use of the most humane treatment available.

Part H - Contractor Procedures

Purpose and Context

(201) UWS has a large contractor workforce that provides each campus with a wide range of contracted services including:

  1. cleaning;
  2. building and plant maintenance works;
  3. emergency repairs and servicing;
  4. upgrades and new capital works;
  5. grounds and landscaping works;
  6. waste removal and recycling services;
  7. information technology services; and
  8. kitchen and catering services.

(202) The purpose of this procedure is to outline UWS contractor requirements in order to ensure environmental compliance across all UWS campuses.

(203) The procedures in this document have been developed with reference to the NSW Protection of the Environmental Operations Act, 1997.

(204) Other relevant and supporting documentation UWS Contractor Health and Safety Procedure .

(205) This procedure is referred in the UWS Environmental Management System Manual as Environmental Operational Control Procedure (Part F).

Procedures

(206) All contractors must be made aware of their environmental responsibilities and obligations via compulsory attendance at the UWS OHS Contractor Induction Course, run by Office of Capital Works and Facilities.

(207) Contractors are required to follow the outlined environmental instructions as per the OHS&E Contractor and Environmental Safety Information Handbook . This Handbook is issued to each contractor at the completion of their attendance at the UWS OHS Contractor Induction Course.

(208) Environmental Instructions cover:

  1. Waste Management:
    1. general waste instructions;
    2. asbestos waste;
    3. chemical wastes;
    4. construction and demolition waste;
    5. electrical wastes;
    6. contaminated wastes;
    7. metal wastes;
    8. polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) material waste;
  2. Pollution:
    1. water pollution;
    2. air pollution;
    3. noise pollution; and
    4. erosion and sediment controls;
  3. Hazardous Substances;
  4. Steps to follow if a chemical spill occurs; and
  5. Protection of Bushland and Landscaped Areas.

(209) For contractors that may only visit the campus once or very infrequently a Short Term Induction Pass is issued. In this case it is the responsibility of the University representative to outline the environmental instructions that the contractor is required to follow.

(210) A register of all contractors that have attended the UWS OHS Contractor Induction Course is kept by Office of Capital Works and Facilities as is a register of all Short Term Induction Passes that are issued.

(211) Furthermore UWS advocates that contractors are also to have the following environmental credentials:

  1. ISO 9001 Quality Assurance and ISO14001 Environmental Management System;
  2. Safe work method statements in place that take into consideration environmental impacts.
Procedure for Reporting Environmental Incidents

(212) A contractor is required to immediately report any accident, incident or occurrence which has or has the potential to cause environmental harm to UWS property or adjoining properties.

(213) Notification is to be to the Environmental Manager or to the Facilities Services Officer. Incidents such as a chemical spill, leak or inappropriate disposal of waste should be contained pending clean-up or containment action.

(214) The OH&S Contractor Induction Card contains details of emergency contact numbers on the back. Likewise the Short term Induction Pass is issued with UWS Emergency Procedures on the back of the ticket.