A new initiative to encourage the waste management industry including landfill operators and waste treatment plants to improve their environmental performance has been announced today (8 August 2006) by the UK Environment Agency.
The plan sets out the environmental and wider impacts of the waste management sector and identifies ten objectives for the industry and the Environment Agency for the next five years. It explains how that sector is performing environmentally and pinpoints main areas for improvement. Some of the objectives outlined are voluntary and others are part of existing regulations. They will be reviewed annually to chart the progress being made.
The ten objectives are:
- lessen the impacts of climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions
- reduce the consumption of raw materials by promoting the use of waste as a resource
- improve and protect the environment by working to reduce number of pollution incidents
- take steps to tackle waste crime and illegal operators
improve data on waste production and management
enhance natural habitats around waste management sites
- work to risk based regulatory and environmental management systems
- improve relationships between the Environment Agency, industry and the wider community
- ensure there is a sustainable and competent waste management industry and regulator
- improve health and safety by reducing accidents and injuries
This list has been produced after consultation.
Humour – The Waster says: “If only he could return to the old days. A deck chair at the landfill site entrance, and a hole in the ground was all you needed! Oh, and of course it was necessary to take the money, which required standing up and adding bank notes to the roll in your pocket.”