Case study: Howard Smith Wharves ecoBiz

Tourism South East Queensland (North)

Howard Smith Wharves (HSW) is an entertainment destination located beneath the iconic Story Bridge in Brisbane. The 3.4-hectare site is home to more than 15 hospitality businesses with over 700 staff.

HSW has ambitious sustainability goals and registered for the ecoBiz program in 2021 for recommendations on how to reduce their water and energy consumption.

During the assessment, ecoBiz noted that HSW had excellent results in reusing and recycling waste and has been recognised as an ecoBiz Star Partner. HSW was able to achieve more than 90% landfill diversion rate which saved a considerable amount on council fees.

Key initiatives to reduce waste

With the objective to reach zero waste, HSW separate their waste into 17 streams and look for solutions to reuse or recycle including:

  • Closing the loop on food waste. HSW transforms 16 tonnes of food waste per month into natural fertiliser for their gardens or to give back to the farmer who supplies their grain. The farmer also takes back the grain waste to feed his cattle.
  • HSW sends other compostable waste, such as napkins, paper towels, ramekins, straws, bamboo skewers and chopsticks, wine corks, citrus, bones, to NuGrow, who turn them into valuable compost.
  • Cardboard is bailed on site and sent for recycling.
  • Glass, bottles and aluminum containers are recycled via Containers for Change.
  • The waste cooking oil is transformed into renewable biofuel.
  • Oyster shells are diverted and used to create reefs.
  • They also reuse or recycle tins and metal, e-waste, batteries, soft plastics, coffee cups, wax boxes, polystyrene and commingled recyclable containers.

Download the ecoBiz webinar to hear about how HSW turns waste into resources.