Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste

Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste


The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealand report, released by her Chief Science Advisor Prof Juliet Gerrard.

“Our ban on plastic bags has already made a difference as we confront our enormous long-term challenge to tackle plastic waste,” Jacinda Ardern said.

“Many New Zealanders, including many children, write to me about plastic – concerned with its proliferation over the past decade and the mounting waste ending up in our oceans.

“I share this concern for our natural environment – one that sustains our tourism, trade and our national identity.

“There’s more to do and our next steps to tackle plastic waste include:

• Setting goals to shift away from low-value and hard-to-recycle plastic
• Our first target will be to move away from single-use packaging and beverage containers made of hard-to-recycle PVC and polystyrene. Examples include polystyrene meat trays, cups and takeaway food containers. We will work towards ensuring that these are made of high-value alternatives like PET, HDPE and polypropylene, which can be recycled and reprocessed
• Stimulate innovation and development of solutions to the soft plastic problem
• Accelerate work with local government and industry on better and more consistent kerbside collection of recyclables
• With industry, continue work to develop a labelling scheme for packaging, including plastic packaging

“We can ensure that New Zealand’s future is not full of throw-aways but of smart innovations and practical steps to reduce, reuse and recycle,” Jacinda Ardern said.

Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage said the report reaffirms and extends the Government’s ambitious plan to reduce waste, which includes:

• A container return scheme for drink bottles and cans
• Regulated product stewardship schemes for tough waste issues such as e-waste, tyres and batteries
• A National Resource Recovery work programme in response to China and other countries’ bans on importing waste and recyclables
• Improving waste data
• Expanding and improving the landfill levy to help fund more ways to recover, re-use and reprocess materials
• A $40 million Provincial Growth Fund investment to turn plastic waste into useful material for businesses and consumers.

“New Zealanders often tell me how concerned they are about the amount of plastics ending up in our oceans and harming fish, marine mammals, seabirds, and turtles,” Eugenie Sage said.

“A lot of this plastic waste doesn’t need to be created in the first place.

“Our goal must be to make Aotearoa an economy where plastic rarely becomes waste or pollution. As Prof Gerrard says there is no silver bullet and we need a systems change. The recommendations in this report will help us to achieve this.

“I aim to have the full Government response to the Rethinking Plastics report confirmed within six months,” Eugenie Sage said.

Since the 1950s, 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic has been produced globally and nearly 80 per cent of that has gone to the dump or been discarded in the environment. Some 36 per cent of plastic produced today is single-use packaging.

Key recommendations from Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealand:

1. Implement a National Plastics Action Plan
An overarching recommendation to guide Aotearoa New Zealand’s transition to a circular economy for plastics.
2. Improve plastics data collection
A series of recommendations to fill known knowledge gaps and develop measures to coordinate and standardise data collection on plastics to guide decision-making.
3. Embed rethinking plastics in the government agenda
A series of recommendations that address opportunities for government to demonstrate best practice, ensure efforts to mitigate issues related to plastics are enduring, and collaborate internationally on these issues.
4. Create and enable consistency in design, use and disposal
A series of recommendations to keep plastics in circulation through improved recycling systems and sector-specific approaches to rethinking plastics.
5. Innovate and amplify
A series of recommendations related to research and innovation for plastics.
6. Mitigate environmental and health impacts of plastics
A series of recommendations to fill knowledge gaps and support ongoing research on the impacts of plastics.

The report can be found here.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Bernie Sanders’ Presidential Bid

Bernie Sanders’ campaign for the Democratic nomination is taking on an air of inevitability, and that likelihood has been met with elation by some people, and feelings of dread in others. Is the Vermont senator the party’s best hope of motivating and leading an inspirational movement to defeat Donald Trump in November, or would he be the easiest opponent of them all for Trump to stigmatise, isolate and defeat? Is Bernie Sanders a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to transform America, or a once- in-a -generation calamity who is likely to entrench in power the worst President in American history? No pressure, people. More>>

First Published on Werewolf here


 

NZ Government: 18,400 Children Lifted Out Of Poverty

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed new reporting showing the Coalition Government is on track to meet its child poverty targets, with 18,400 children lifted out of poverty as a result of the Families Package... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Our Unreal Optimism About Coronavirus

At this week’s Chinese New Year celebrations, PM Jacinda Ardern was resolutely upbeat that business with China would soon bounce back to normal – better than ever, even - once the coronavirus epidemic has been brought under control. To Ardern, ... More>>

ALSO:

Vaping: Government To Regulate Products

No sales to under-18-year-olds No advertising and sponsorship of vaping products and e-cigarettes No vaping or smokeless tobacco in smokefree areas Regulates vaping product safety comprehensively, - including devices, flavours and ingredients Ensure ... More>>

ALSO:


Gordon Campbell: On The Political Donations Scandals
Even paranoids have real enemies. While there has been something delusionary about the way New Zealand First has been living in denial about its donations scandal, one can sympathise with its indignation about Paula Bennett and Simon Bridges being among its chief accusers. More>>

ALSO:

UN Expert: NZ Housing Crisis Requires Bold Human Rights Response

This is a press statement from UN Special Rapporteur on the right to housing at the end of her 10-day visit to New Zealand. The Government of New Zealand has recognized that the country is facing a housing crisis, said Leilani Farha, UN Special Rapporteur ... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels