The Associate Minister for the Environment is right to invest in recycling infrastructure; but keeps forgetting about collection and transportation.
“Collection mechanisms are a problem in regard to Plasback” says Sandra Murray, Co-ordinator for the NZ Product Stewardship Council “farmers in Gisborne and other areas pay through the nose for Plasbak to collect and transport their farm plastic for recycling”.
“In fact, those farmers are paying too much – Agpak sell them silage wrap, and then their subsidiary company Plasback charges them to pick it up. In some cases farmers have to transport their farm plastics to a council facility to be picked up – costing both the farmer and the council for the service to operate in their area”
“We frequently hear farmers being abused for not being responsible with their waste, and yet – unlike urban centres – rural areas have greatly reduced recycling services and what they do have is expensive”.
“The Associate Minister for the Environment, Scott Simpson, is happy to spend money on waste infrastructure – which is good. But the Minister seems oblivious to the fact that waste needs to be collected and transported to these recycling facilities. He also forgot about collection and transport when he spent $19M on tyre infrastructure recently, meaning the tyre problem will continue!”
The Waste Minimisation Act 2008 needs to be enacted as it was intended.
The NZPSC calls for comprehensive producer responsibility to be set in place for rural waste. This means the cost of collection, transport and recycling is built into the product price, rather than rorting farmers by charging them twice for the same product.
This article is in response to the Associate Minister for the Environment: press releases dated 25/07/2017: