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New Zealanders well on the way to reducing waste

15 October 2008 Media Statement
Packaging Accord report shows New Zealanders well on the way to reducing waste

The Ministry for the Environment has welcomed Packaging Accord data which shows New Zealanders are now recycling about 60 per cent of packaging, and that targets in waste reduction are being met ahead of schedule.

“The New Zealand Packaging Accord officially released its Year Four Progress Report yesterday, with data that shows recycling is becoming a way of life for New Zealanders,” said Martyn Pinckard, Acting Manager of the Ministry’s Sustainable Business Group.

The latest report presents 2007's data, and shows that the recycling targets for all five packaging categories – aluminium, glass, steel, paper and plastics – have been achieved one year early.

“Now entering its fifth year, the Accord plays a crucial part in dealing with one of the key environmental issues facing New Zealand – waste minimisation.

“Under the Accord, producers, brand owners, retailers and importers take responsibility for what happens to their packaged products from manufacture to use, to recycling and eventual disposal. Also involved are packaging manufacturers, councils and businesses that collect used packaging material for recycling and consumers who buy and throw away packaging.

“Packaging Accord members have been key participants in the Waste Minimisation Act 2008 development process, and it is important they be involved in the development of a well-designed framework for voluntary packaging waste minimisation initiatives.

“Higher commodity prices for recyclable materials have improved the economics of recycling, and have helped an early achievement of the recovery targets.

“The Accord can therefore afford to be even more ambitious in its fifth and final year with its aims to make New Zealand a leader in the management of the environmental impact from packaging,” Mr Pinckard said.


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