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Zero Waste Should Still Be Dunedin's Goal

Zero Waste Should Still Be Dunedin's Goal

Green MP Mike Ward is concerned Dunedin may be turned into a regional rubbish dump, after reports the Dundein City Council's zero waste working party had been dissolved and reformed as the 'resource recovery and waste working party'.

Mr Ward, Green Party Spokesperson on Waste, welcomed the progress the zero waste working party had achieved, including introducing kerbside recycling.

"Let's hope that a change in name will not result in a shift in focus away from these admirable projects."

Mr Ward expressed concerns the change in working party title meant the Dunedin City Council (DCC) "appeared to be backtracking on commitments to achieve a waste-free city."

Media reports today that the DCC is investigating a combined landfill for the Clutha, Waitaki and Dunedin districts are worrying Mr Ward.

"It would be disappointing if Dunedin, the jewel of Otago, were blighted by the presence of a massive regional landfill.

"All local authorities, including Dunedin, need to work towards making landfills a thing of the past.

"The strategy now needs to minimise the amount we throw away and to recover the resources of products that have reached the end of their life.

Mr Ward is currently in the final phase of a tour of the South Island on his recumbent tricycle, where he has been talking to local authorities and people involved in waste initiatives.

"The message they have been giving me is: 'give us the legislation!'

"There are wonderful local initiatives taking root around the country, but to be successful there needs to be legislation to underpin their efforts.

"While there is some disagreement about the detail, everyone is saying that extending producer responsibilities are a bottom line, and most favour landfill levies and landfill bans," concluded Mr Ward.


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