Established in 1936, Booth Transport is a family-owned company that provides freight, container and bulk liquid transportation, warehousing, and logistics services nationally.
In 2018 Booth Transport commenced an incredibly ambitious environmental protection project in Victoria’s Moira Shire – the Strathmerton Water Treatment Plant.
The 4500 square metre Strathmerton plant is the company’s milk logistics and distribution hub. Previously wastewater generated from washing the milk tanks and storage silos was transported off site for disposal.
The initial designs of the milk transfer station had all liquid waste being trucked offsite for external treatment. However, aware this wasn’t a viable long-term solution, Booth Transport began investigating how to better deal with the wastewater. After exploring standard and proven technology, the business set its ambitions higher. What is no one else doing? Booth Transport’s extensive research took the busines to Chile, after which the designs for the reimagined Strathmerton Water Treatment Plant began.
The Strathmerton Water Treatment Plant is an Australian-first environmental protection project that uses worms as its engine, increasing efficiency in waste management and dramatically decreasing the company’s environmental impact.
This new technology combines a worm farm, where water is filtered for dairy proteins to be ingested by worms and desalination.
At capacity the plant will see a reduction of 3000 tonnes of carbon emissions and an additional 121,000 kilolitres of recycled water put into the irrigation system each year.
The plant has the potential to process waste from neighbouring processing systems, other than milk, offering even more support for local farmers and savings to local businesses.
Brian Booth, MD of Booth Transport said:
“We thought we could probably do something different and that’s what we have done. We checked around the world to see what could be done and we’ve come up with water treatment in a different way.”
This project was funded using Environmental Upgrade Finance (EUF), a unique form of finance that can help building owners unlock funding for sustainable retrofits.
EUF is government-enabled finance which allows a charge to be placed on the building. Lenders such as Sustainable Australia Fund (SAF) can then provide a flexible green loan with no upfront payments and long loan terms, often designing the project to be cashflow positive from year one (where savings exceed repayments).
EUF is the only green loan in Australia that is legislated to show a positive environmental benefit. Projects must be able to demonstrate this environmental benefit (such as a reduction in carbon emissions, water saving, reduction of waste, or improved efficiency) to be approved.
In Australia, EUF has unlocked over $82 million in business investment through over 140 upgrade projects.
This has resulted in:
– Installation of over 25,000 kW worth of solar panels
– Reduction of over 790,000 tonnes of carbon emissions
– Cost savings of over $126 million for local businesses
EUF was instrumental in allowing the Booth Transport team to proceed with the upgrade and the installation of:
– A 99.75 kW solar PV system at their Laverton site
– A 391.02 kW solar PV system at their Strathmerton site
– A 100kWh Tesla Powerpack installed at their Strathmerton site.
The three upgrades provided $141,250 annual savings in their energy bills and were cashflow positive from day one.
SAF believe that capital can be utilised as a force for environmental good. EUF is one way that municipalities around the world can help unlock capital for building retrofits that deliver tangible impact and improve economic and environmental outcomes