Hogan's New Waste Policy Focuses On Waste Protection
|Phil Hogan, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government today, 25th July 2012, launched the Government's new waste management policy, 'A Resource Opportunity'.
Minister Hogan said: "This policy brings certainty to industry and other participants in the sector following five years of review. The policy also incorporates current thinking on market structures and competition in the sector, and reflects the Competition Authority’s revised assessment of franchise bidding and existing market structures."
Minister Hogan said that our natural environment and 'green' image is one of Ireland's greatest assets. "We must protect the environment, not only for its own value and our well-being, but for our green image, for the tourism and food sectors and to attract foreign investment. The underlying principle of this Policy is protecting that vital asset. It is about minimizing the amount of waste we produce, eliminating landfill and maximising waste as a resource to produce new products and renewable energy."
The policy published today stresses the environmental and economic benefits of better waste management, particularly waste prevention. "When we cut the amount of waste we direct to landfill, we also cut costs for families and businesses. The less waste people produce, the less they will have to pay," said Minister Hogan.
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The analysis underpinning the Policy shows that the continuation of the side by side competition model for household waste, under a significantly strengthened regulatory regime, is best placed to deliver a thriving and competitive waste sector with the associated benefits for employment. The new regulations will allow waste collection companies to continue to compete for business but they will have to adhere to new standards of service, incentivise their customers to adopt more sustainable behaviours and be much more transparent about their charging structures. "I'll make sure consumers get the information they require so if they are not satisfied, they can switch provider," the Minister added, criticising how some firms had treated their customers in recent times and the level of information provided to them. "It's not acceptable for firms to ignore the genuine complaints of their customers and they will be held to account for their failures under the new system."
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