Local Government New Zealand is pleased to be a partner in a new voluntary New Zealand Packaging Accord, which will help reduce the amount of waste from packaging that turns up at your local tip.
The Accord, which will be signed on 10 August, brings together all the parties involved in the life cycle management of packaging – the Minister for the Environment (on behalf of the Government), the Packaging Council of New Zealand (on behalf of brand owners, retailers/importers and packaging manufacturers), Local Government New Zealand (on behalf of local government) and the Recycling Operators of New Zealand (on behalf of recyclers).
According to John Hutchings, Environment Manager of Local Government New Zealand, a critical feature of the new accord is that the producers of the packaging (the brand owners and retailers/importers) are involved for the first time.
“Under the accord the producers accept primary responsibility for the full packaging life cycle and improved efficiency in the production, use and recovery of packaging materials,” he said. “This concept of ‘extended producer responsibility’ is foundation of the New Zealand strategy and means that the people producing the packaging are also committed to reducing waste.”
Local Government New Zealand also supports the voluntary approach of the Accord.
“Our first preference is always use a voluntary approach, and in this Accord there is a strong commitment from all parties to deliver on its objectives. At the same time industry knows that if the voluntary approach does not provide the right results, Government is prepared to consider mandatory regulation,” he said.
The Local Government New Zealand National Council agreed to be involved in the development of the new Packaged Goods Accord and approved the Local Government New Zealand Sector Action plan at their meeting in May 2004.
Each sector which is a party to the Accord has prepared a Sector Action Plan. These plans provide detail on the measures each sector plan to undertake and also contain joint and sector targets to be achieved over the five-year period of the Accord. These targets are measurable and will be publicly available via the Packaging Council’s website (www.packaging.org.nz).
It is believed that this will be the first time that the packaging sector, including retailers, have made the type of public commitments they will be undertaking through their Sector Action Plans.
One of the keys to the success of this Accord is co-operation between all the sectors in progressing the actions in the Sector Action Plans and in the careful monitoring of progress. Local Government New Zealand has a place on the Governing Board – which will help us ensure progress for our sector as well as monitoring the progress of the other sectors.
The President of Local
Government New Zealand, Basil Morrison, will sign the Accord
on behalf of Local Government New