Wales aims to be 'zero waste' society by 2050

30 Jun 10
The Welsh Government has set out how it will make Wales a zero-waste nation by 2050, aiming to recycle 70% of waste by 2025
By Paul Dicken

26 June 2010

The Welsh Government has set out how it will make Wales a zero-waste nation by 2050, aiming to recycle 70% of waste by 2025.

Launching the Towards Zero Waste strategy on June 21, Environment Minister Jane Davidson said the plans were among the most progressive in the world. Reducing the amount of waste being produced was at the heart of the strategy, she added.

‘We must change our attitude towards waste because we cannot continue as a “throwaway” society sending our rubbish to landfill,’ she said.
Welsh households currently throw away around £50 a month of unused food.

A consultation document on waste collected by local authorities sets out the possible actions that will be taken, including rewarding households that cut their rubbish, providing recycling services for business and reducing the size of wheeled bins.

The Welsh Government is critical of steps being taken in England to retain weekly bin collections and reward people for throwing away more recyclable rubbish. It believes the focus should be on reducing the total amount of waste produced.

A spokeswoman for the Welsh Local Government Association said local authorities were encouraging people to reduce waste, supporting re-use and preparing to invest, in collaboration with others, in facilities to treat food waste.

‘Over time, as products are “eco-designed” and recycling levels increase, the amount of residual waste itself should fall as we move towards the goal of “zero waste” that the strategy has set,’ she added.

The Welsh Government expects to introduce a charge for single use carrier bags in 2011, with the consultation on the scheme suggesting a 7p charge per bag.

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