Environment ministry to boost recycling, waste management

Recycling bins, looking distinctly misused (picture is illustrative).
Recycling bins, looking distinctly misused (picture is illustrative). Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

The Ministry of the Environment has started implementing EU waste package directives, which will bring several key changes in waste management, as well as improving waste offense monitoring and imposing stricter fines.

Many of the obligations were already in place, the ministry says, but the directives and their implementation will set new and longer term goals, particularly in areas of recycling, waste management and waste responsibility.

Municipal waste targets for recycling and re-use will rise in stages, to 55 percent in 2025, 60 percent in 2030 and 65 percent in 2035. Packaging waste recycling levels should reach 70 percent by 2030.

Maximum fines for waste offenses are to be increased, reaching levels of €100,000 to €400,000 for 'legal persons' for the most serious transgressions, ERR reports.

The process of categorizing waste and even the definition of waste and non-waste will also be simplified, with case-by-case decisions used instead of more rigid EU and environment ministry regulations.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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