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News Bulletin : ADA News Bulletin October 2010
12 OCTOBER 2010 ViCtOriAn DentiStS embrace campaign to keep amalgam out of sewerage systems The highly successful campaign to keep amalgam out of Victoria’s sewerage systems is now in its final phase. The success of the program has attracted interstate and international interest. More than 550 surgeries have installed ISO 11 143 compliant amalgam separators under the Dentists for Cleaner Water program. Some 400 other surgeries are awaiting the installation of compliant amalgam separators. The program’s target of 900 dental surgeries having compliant amalgam separators installed will be easily met. The three-year program is a partnership between the ADAVB, water retailers and EPA Victoria. With $1 million from these sources, the scheme provides rebates on the purchase and installation costs for compliant amalgam separators. Being on a sliding scale, the rebate for the first two years was $1,000 or 20% of purchase and installation. The rebate for this, the final year, is $500 or 10% – whichever is the greatest. The scheme will conclude on 30 June 2011. The Branch realized that there was an environmental issue with amalgam waste and wanted to be proactive before there was a push for regulatory controls. ADAVB turned to Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) for assistance. Through the organisation’s Sustainable Business department and the AiGroup covenant with EPA Victoria, the Australian Industry Group provided advice and guidance. This led to extensive research resulting in a detailed report on amalgam waste in Victoria. Having studied the report, EPA Victoria saw merit in the desire of ADAVB to protect Victoria’s sewerage systems and quickly involved the water bodies. A partnership between ADAVB and AiGroup, EPA Victoria and the Victorian water industry was forged. From this partnership the Dentists for Cleaner Water program was developed and implemented. Victoria’s Environment Minister, Mr Gavin Jennings, officially launched the program in a Melbourne CBD dental surgery in 2008. Since then, it has continued to receive considerable political kudos and approval from environmental groups. A leading dental industry representative and former President of the Australian Dental Industry Association, Mr Ian Crawford, was engaged as program manager. Mr Crawford acts as a conduit between dentists, dental supply companies and their peak body – Australian Dental Industry Association (ADIA), dental equipment installers, and the project’s steering committee. The program is supported by a number of resources including a self-contained Dentists for Cleaner Water section of the Branch’s website. A summary of the program was presented at the prestigious Society of Sustainability and Environmental Engineering conference held in Melbourne last year. The Australian Dental Association Queensland have indicated that they are keen to promote the program to the Queensland water authorities. Dentists for Cleaner Water has also sparked the interest of bodies including the International Dental Manufacturers. Knowing that dental assistants are wonderful envoys, I promoted the program at ADAVB’s recent Dental Assistants convention. I have been honoured with an invitation to speak to dentists at next year’s ADA Congress in Brisbane about environmental sustainability in dental practices and the dental industry which will include a segment on Dentists for Cleaner Water. The keys to the program’s success are: the partnership between ADAVB, EPA and the water authorities; installers and repairers who speak to dentists; liaison with industrial waste collectors; and the healthy relationship that the Branch has with ADIA. Garry Pearson Chief Executive Officer Australian Dental Association Victorian Branch This article is republished by request of the Dental Instruments, Materials and Equipment Committee with the kind permission of the ADA Victorian Branch. Serviceman, Bill Stony installs an ISO compliant 11 143 amalgam separator in the surgery of an ADAVB member. committee report
ADA News Bulletin September 2010
ADA News Bulletin November 2010