28 June 2017
By Tom O’Sullivan
The Southern Region Waste Management Office says New Household Waste Collection Charging Arrangements will boost the Circular Economy
The Southern Region Waste Management Office (SRWMO) has welcomed the Household Waste Collection Charging Arrangements announced by the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Denis Naughten. The policy provides for a more flexible framework for waste collection charges and will further enhance the capacity of all stakeholders to reach the targets set down in the European Waste Framework, and the Regional Waste Management plans 2015-2021.
The SRWMO has described as positive the initiative contained in the policy regarding support for persons with lifelong / long term medical incontinence.
Philippa King, Waste Plan Coordinator with the SRWMO said, “This issue was identified as part of the Household Waste Management Policy review process, and the subvention proposed by DCCAE, and facilitated by the waste management industry, will provide for the average disposal costs of incontinence wear per person annually.
“Following a review of Household Waste Collection Charging Arrangements carried out over the last year, it also became evident that the needs of households vary significantly with regard to waste management. This new policy recognises that “a one size fits all” is not the best approach and that different households require different solutions allowing them a range of charging options, which will enable households to choose the service that best suits their circumstances.”
“The policy initiatives announced by Minister Naughten yesterday (Wednesday) are environmentally driven and will help to reduce our impact on the environment,” she added.
“They recognises that although the number of landfills have decreased, in the last two years our reliance on landfill has increased, and therefore diversion from landfill is increasingly important.
“On a positive note, exploiting the potential of waste as a resource will contribute to the creation of employment and alternative energy options. This will require that we all ensure less waste goes to to landfill through more prevention, recycling and recovery.
“In all, these initiatives contribute to Ireland’s engagement in the Circular Economy, and a time when we will no longer view waste as just waste, but as a viable and useful resource,” said the SRWMO Waste Plan Coordinator.
Ireland has an obligation under the Waste Framework directive to recycle 50% of household waste by 2020, and a regional target of recycling 50% managed Municipal Solid Waste by 2020 has also been set. Households across the country will therefore have to reduce their waste and increase their rate of recycling by an average of 5% in the next three years.
Ms King explained that while reaching these targets will require a change of approach from all stakeholders, the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment is providing support with regard to awareness and education in relation to household waste management in general, and with regard to the policy initiatives outlined in particular. The programme is currently being developed and will commence during the summer.
“The SRWMO is also satisfied with the waste industry’s commitment to the continued reduction in household residual waste production, through the provision of food waste services, and to the improvement in the quality of recyclate as a resource through active engagement with consumers. We are encouraged by consultations with industry which indicate it will respond in a positive way to this policy initiative and continue to reduce and divert residual waste away from landfill and enhance recycling consistent with the waste plan targets,” she concluded.