Shire leads the way with steam weeding
DOUGLAS Shire is leading by example with the trial of steam weeding technology.
It has contracted Kurandabased environmental group Blue Hand Steam to work with council officers to demonstrate its uses.
The aimn is to be able to stop using chemical weed killers where possible.
Blue Hand Steam is an offshoot of a non-profit sustain- able environment group that sets up enterprises to help the environment.
Its executive director, Kinan Lemburg, says the group is in talks with most ofthe local concils but Douglas was the first to get involved.
Blue Hand and council’s coordinator of open spaces, Peter Logan, turned up at Miallo State School to demonstrate the technology and speak to the kids about weed control.
They were invited by the school, as the children had a project to clean up a nearby site.
“It’s always good for us to trial new technology,” Mr Logan told the
“And obviously we’re a very green shire as well. We do use a lot of chemicals for cost effectiveness, but it’s good to be open minded about ways to do things better.”
He said when it came to weed management there were different tools depending on the particular task. The steam weeding would likely have a role as one item in the department’s armory.
“I think it would be very well suited to a lot of our open space areas,” Mr Logan said.
This weeding works by the steam raising the temperature inside a plant’s cells to the point where the cells collapse.
Mr Lemburg stressed that steam weeding can be an alternative to those chemicals some which are under an increasing cloud of suspicion, especially glysophate in the popular product Round Up.
“People have been aware of the side effects of chemicals for a long time.
“WHO ruled in 2015 that some weed killers are probably carcinogenic.
“When you take everything into account I say this is much more cost effective than chemicals. It is very effective technoology. This has been in development for 15 years.”
Council’s Peter Logan (centre), Blue Hand’s Kinan Lemburg (far right) and Miallo State School children watch the steam weeding in action