Launch of National Waste Data ReportAssociate Minister for the Environment
Today the Associate Minister for the Environment, Hon Deborah Morris, launched the first National Waste Data Report, a major step forward in the understanding of waste generation and disposal in New Zealand.
The report will be used for a number of purposes such as:
to review the effectiveness and focus of current policies;
to provide a basis for the development of environmental indicators as part of the national Environmental Indicators Programme;
to identify information gaps and accuracy problems; and
to provide a benchmark upon which to measure progress nationally and regionally.
"The Coalition Agreement sets out a target for reducing waste. Reducing waste on a per capita basis remains a top priority" said Deborah Morris.
"The information contained in the Waste Data Report is telling us loud and clear that relying on voluntary agreements to reduce waste is just not working. It is time to look at some new strategies.
"We are now at a point where we need something with more teeth. The Government has always said that continuing to rely on voluntary agreements would depend on progress made towards waste management goals.
"The Ministry for the Environment is sharpening up some new tools to ensure the Government's waste policy is advanced. There is a growing consensus on the need for mechanisms other than voluntary agreements. One of the tools for tackling this is the introduction of mandatory environmental reporting by companies which I announced last month" said Deborah Morris.
The Minister emphasised that, "Industry should not sit on its hands waiting for the Government to take action. Prudent industries that are addressing solid waste management will be less affected if the Government moves towards regulatory approaches".
Hon Deborah Morris was addressing the launch of 'Target Zero', a partnership in cleaner production between ECNZ, Southpower, Christchurch City Council, Hawke's Bay Power, Hawke's Bay Regional Council, Hastings District Council, Napier City Council, and the University of Auckland.