A project that recycles used cooking oil into renewable biodiesel fuel has taken out this year's Golden Gecko award for environmental excellence.
This year's award was won by ESS Support Services Worldwide and AshOil, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Ashburton Aboriginal Corporation.
Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Marmion said AshOil recycled all of ESS' used cooking oil in Western Australia - about 200,000 litres per year.
Mr Marmion said the project reduced carbon emissions by 500 metric tonnes, the equivalent of taking 100 cars permanently off the road.
He said the project also used waste products from producing biodiesel to develop other products, such as dust suppressant, which had the potential to save large amounts of water.
The Minister said the Golden Geckos are awarded by the State Government, through the Department of Mines and Petroleum, to recognise companies that had made an outstanding contribution to developing WA's resources in an environmentally responsible manner.
"The gecko is a great symbol of environmental performance. It is among the last species to return to an area after a land disturbance such as mining, and their presence indicates a return to a healthy functioning ecosystem," he said.
The event also recognised Franmarine Underwater Services Pty Ltd and the Department of Fisheries with a Certificate of Merit. Franmarine and the Department of Fisheries have designed a system to trial the in-water eradication of marine bio-fouling of big marine vessels.
"The system promotes a preventative risk-management approach to biosecurity, and a 'clean-hull' operating policy for WA and Australian waters," Mr Marmion said.
"This project and technology shows great innovation, exists outside and above of industry standards, and sets a precedent for in-water hull cleaning."
This year's Golden Gecko award entrants were:
- ESS Support Services Worldwide and AshOil
- Franmarine Underwater Services Pty Ltd and the Department of Fisheries
- Newmont Mining Corporation, Central Desert Native Title Services and Biota Environmental Sciences
- Rio Tinto Iron Ore
- Rio Tinto Iron Ore and Sinclair Knight Merz.
More information at http://www.dmp.wa.gov.au/goldengecko
More information on winning project at