The public are being invited to have their say on the preparation of a new regional plan that will set out a framework for waste management in ten countries across the south of the country during the next six years.
The Southern Region Waste Management Plan, which encompasses 10 local authorities and is one of three being developed in Ireland, also sets out a range of policies and actions in order to meet the specified mandatory and performance targets.
The Southern Waste Region encompasses the local authorities in Tipperary, Carlow, Clare, Cork City, Cork County, Kerry, Kilkenny, Limerick City & County, Waterford City & County and Wexford.
This week’s launch of the three draft regional waste management plans took place in Galway City Council’s offices and was also attended by the Chief Executives of the three Regional Local Authorities, namely Tipperary County Council (Southern), Limerick City and County Council, Dublin City Council (Eastern and Midlands), and Mayo County Council (Connacht Ulster).
The launch coincided with the commencement of a period of public consultation which will continue until January 30th 2015, while the regional waste management plans are expected to be finalised by the end of March 2015.
“Most importantly the plan seeks to assist and support the community and local business to develop resource efficiency and waste prevention initiatives,” explained Ms Philippa King, Regional Waste Co-ordinator, Southern Waste Region.
She continued: “A key plan target is to achieve a 1% reduction per annum in the quantity of household waste generated per capita over the period of the plan. In tandem the plan identifies measures to develop a circular economy where waste management initiatives stop being confined to treating and disposing of waste, instead supporting initiatives that value waste as a resource or potential raw material.”
Ms. King added: “We want to hear your views on achievements to date and about what more needs to be done. Have your say in the future of waste management by telling us your views. The more feedback we receive the greater the potential for improving Ireland’s environment into the future. A feedback form and the full plan is available on www.southernwasteregion.ie”
The preparation of new regional waste management plans for the regions have been under way since late 2013, following an evaluation of the previous plans which covered ten regions nationally.
Since the last plans were published between 2004 and 2006, a southern region network of 770 Bottle bank sites and 50 Civic Amenity Sites accepting more than 25 categories of waste have been maintained, while a household recovery/recycling rate of 63% and a commercial recovery / recycling rate of 61% have been achieved. Nationally, a packaging recovery rate of 87% was achieved while an average of 7.3 kg of WEEE was collected per person from private households.
For more on the public consultation process and the draft plans visit www.southernwasteregion.ie.