Why next generation infrastructure is an opportunity not to be wasted

Steve Gross

Palisade Impact

Australia is teeming with opportunity for development but faces substantial structural challenges in the transition towards Net Zero.

Building infrastructure can be expensive and inefficient, and incumbent systems fail to adequately address social and environmental issues.

The next generation of infrastructure must be green[1], smarter, more inclusive, and more connected to help address these challenges.


Australians generate 2.9 tonnes of waste per head annually, a large portion of this is organic waste.

Food waste in Australia is staggering: Food Bank Australia estimates that 7.6 million tonnes of food is wasted each year – enough to fill the Melbourne Cricket Grounds nine times – and costing the Australian government $36.6 billion. This amounts to 17.5 million tonnes of CO2 annually.

The National Waste Plan has set a target of reducing the amount of organic waste to landfill by 50% by 2030.

Despite significant investment from state and federal governments, there are still gaps in the policy coordination and funding designed to address these issues; the largest of these is the infrastructure gap.

The organics recycling industry in Australia is highly fragmented and many businesses are generationally family owned.

Much privately owned waste infrastructure lacks the efficiency to effectively manage waste as necessitated by circular economy targets.

As these businesses mature and undergo a generational shift in ownership, many families will seek to transform their assets or sell the business.

The convergence of this shift and the gap in public infrastructure funding creates an opportunity for private capital to accelerate the next generation of circular waste infrastructure.

Next generation waste infrastructure is an opportunity for investors to access assets that are increasingly economically and environmentally relevant.

Since they are an essential service that is critical for public safety, waste management assets feature stable and recurring cash flows, coupled with unique downside protection.

This is bolstered by high barriers to entry owing to industry vertical integration and increasing regulation. The social benefits of funding these assets is also substantial.

Alongside making strides in achieving Net Zero and dramatically reducing landfill, it is estimated facilitating a circular economy will create 17,000 full-time jobs and contribute a present value of $210 billion to the Australian economy[2].


Australia faces complex socio-economic challenges in the Race to Zero, but solving these challenges presents a unique opportunity.

As the capital gap grows, changes in regulation, technology, and asset ownership provide investors with the opportunity to fund the next generation of infrastructure: assets and businesses that are greener1, smarter, and more inclusive.

Palisade Impact invests in businesses that we believe will rise to this challenge.

We invest for the long term, to help these businesses grow and create the infrastructure of the future.

[1] In this context, “Green” refers to projects that have clear environmental benefits.

[2] According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, based on 2021 census data.

General financial advice is provided by Palisade Impact Pty Limited (ACN 650 605 164) (Palisade Impact) of Level 25 Angel Place, 123 Pitt Street, Sydney NSW Australia 2000. Palisade Impact is a Corporate Authorised Representative (No. 1293078) of Pinnacle Investment Management Limited (ABN 66 109 659109), an Australian Financial Services Licensee (No. 322140). Iinformation in this communication was prepared for the specific wholesale investor it is addressed to. The information is not intended as an asset recommendation or statement of opinion intended to influence a person or persons in making a decision in relation to investment. While every effort has been made to verify the data in this communication, Palisade Impact and Pinnacle Investment Management Limited do not warrant the accuracy, reliability or completeness of the information and persons relying on this information do so at their own risk. Performance data contained in this communication has been sourced from Palisade Impact, Pinnacle Investment Management Limited and the investee companies. Gross returns are calculated before allowing for fees paid to the manager, but are after transaction and other costs. Past performance is not indicative of future performance. The information provided in this communication is not to be disclosed in whole or part or used by any other party without the prior written consent of Palisade Impact. Palisade Impact and its associates may have interests in financial products, and may receive fees from companies referred to during this communication. Past performance is not a reliaable indicator of future performance.

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Steve Gross
Chief Executive Officer
Palisade Impact

Steve has over 25-years’ experience in impactful infrastructure and in building and growing businesses around the world. His experience covers investment origination, execution and management as well as business development. Immediately prior to...


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