The team at Cross Connections Consulting has a passion for improving waste management practices and progressing resource efficiency opportunities by challenging the status quo about waste.
Since it was first established by Samantha Cross in 2014, Cross Connections has successfully worked with organisations across a diverse industry base. With over 40 years combined industry experience, the team at Cross Connections delivers waste management reviews and identifies specific project opportunities which assist businesses and councils to reduce costs and participate in the circular economy.
Samantha said the business is focusing on helping businesses to rethink their approach to waste.
“We assist businesses to rethink waste and to move away from a take-make-dispose linear model to a more circular way of managing waste. The model allows us to identify commercial opportunities to redesign, reduce or redirect waste so it can be reprocessed, remanufactured or re-used,” Samantha said.
Samantha said that challenging the status quo is key to their purpose.
“The opportunity to add value to end-of-life waste streams as a raw material input in a manufacturing process or as a saleable product, can deliver economic, social and environmental benefits for business, councils and communities. We each have the power to make a difference and be part of the solution,” Samantha said.
One of the pioneering projects which Cross Connections has been instrumental in establishing is the Plastic Police® program. In 2015 Samantha recognised the increasing volumes of soft plastics still ending up in landfill and presenting as litter in the local land and marine environments. Soft plastics mainly comprise flexible plastic packaging found around products and pallets.
“With limited options available to businesses, councils and school communities to collect and recycle soft plastics, I decided to develop and trial a new model,” Samantha said.
During the past two years, the innovative Plastic Police program has been successfully trialled in the Hunter Region with several councils, schools and businesses participating in the program.
Samantha is about to ramp things up with an expanded regional pilot to prove the viability and scalability of the program.
“With the right program partners and funding support in place, I’m confident we can now scale this innovative program to operate at a regional level,” Samantha said.
Cross Connections is collaborating with identified partners to collect, process and remanufacture products made from the collected soft plastics.
“This is a Hunter first and it would be great to showcase what we can achieve collectively as a region,” Samantha said.
Cross Connections consults to the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage through their Sustainability Advantage Program and has worked with the NSW EPA under the Waste Less Recycle More, Circulate Program. These programs offer organisations the opportunity to receive additional support or funding to implement sustainability and landfill diversion projects.
IMAGE | Cross Connections Consulting Founder, Samantha Cross speaking to a school about Plastic Police®.