GIS – 7 July 2020:Five Civic Amenity Centers are being constructed at transfer stations situated at La Chaumière, La Laura, Roche Bois , Poudre D’Or and La Brasserie. Five additional centers will be constructed in the near future near populated regions for which potential sites are being identified.
The Minister of Environment, Solid Waste Management and Climate Change, Mr. Kavydass Ramano, made this announcement, this morning, in reply to a Private Notice Question in regard to the elaboration of a Solid Waste Management Strategy, in the National Assembly.
In his address, the Minister highlighted that the quantity of waste has been increasing at an annual rate of nearly 2.8% and that last year only some 545 000 tons of waste were disposed at the Mare Chicose landfill. He stated that over-reliance on landfills is not sustainable and that in that respect Government has initiated with the assistance of the Agence Française de Développement the elaboration of a Solid Waste Management Strategy.
He dwelt on key measures have been taken based on a 2017 consultancy study for development of a new Solid Waste Management Strategy and an action plan for Mauritius with focus on resource recovery and recycling and aiming at maximizing resource recovery and recycling while also tapping the energy recovery potential from waste .
The strategy and action plan that were submitted in December 2017 comprise the following 5 strategic areas : prevention and environmentally responsible consumption; increase of resource recovery; provision of adequate technologies for energy recovery from waste; provision of adequate disposal infrastructure and information, education and communication.
Mr. Kavydass Ramano, also spoke about the recommendations on solid waste management of the Assises de l’Environnement organised by the Ministry in December 2019 as part of a nationwide consultative process. These are: an integrated national solid waste management strategy with a clear vision and objectives visible to everyone, reducing reliance on landfilling and shifting from a linear to circular economy through setting up of Civic amenity centres at the level of local authorities for the collection of bulky waste and the setting up of material recovery facilities and composting plants.
They also include the promulgation and regulations for segregation of waste at source, introduction of extended producer responsibility with a new approach to manage waste streams such as electrical and electronic waste.
The Minister stressed that resource recovery and recycling is the cornerstone of our Strategic Plan taking into consideration that the major fraction of domestic and commercial wastes is organic nature and the remaining being potentially recyclable.
The Civic Amenity Center, he pointed out, is a facility whereby households can dispose of specific waste that are normally not collected by local authorities and can resolve the issue of illegal dumping will be reduced and material disposed will be reused and recycled in line with the concept of circular economy.
As regard dry wastes, the Minister indicated that provision has been made in the budget 2020/2021 for a feasibility study to be conducted on the construction and operation of sorting units on a Public Private Partnership basis.
In order to sustain the recycling industry and ensure a high quality of waste materials to the recyclers, waste segregation at source is fundamental and the following measures will be initially taken, namely: acquisition of bins, distribution of bins and sensitisation by Local Authorities and amendments to Local Government Act or by-laws to make waste segregation at source an obligation.
Minister Kavydass Ramano also underlined that a provision of Rs 5 Million has been made under the National Environment Fund in the budget 2020/2021. With this initiative, the green waste generated at some markets will be diverted to the Transfer Stations.
Speaking about the issue of plastic pollution, the Minister underlined the need for everyone to shift to the use of biodegradable and compostable plastic products.
He indicated that some 125 million of plastic bottles (polyethylene terephthalate) are circulated on the market, amounting to some 2500 tons of plastics being used, on a yearly basis. Only 40 % of the plastic bottles are collected for recycling.
My endeavour, he said, is to develop a strategy for solid- waste management in line with Sustainable Development Goal 12 which promotes sustainable consumption and reduction.
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