Welsh environment bill aims to boost recycling

12th May 2015


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  • Natural resources ,
  • Pollution & Waste Management

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IEMA

Wales is to overhaul waste management by introducing bans on burning recyclable materials and improving the segregation of waste through new environmental legislation, published today.

The environment (Wales) bill, published this morning, will also strengthen rules for the collection and disposal of waste so that more material is segregated at source by businesses and the public sector. A full separate collection service for segregated recyclable materials will be available for organisations that produce waste.

The bill also gives ministers powers to extend the plastic bag charge to other bags, and place a duty on retailers to donate the net proceeds from the scheme to good causes.

The legislation will set a separate 80% greenhouse-gas emissions reduction target by 2050 for Wales, in line with that of England. Interim emissions targets will also be set between 2016 and 2020, and these will feed into carbon budgets for Wales, the government said. The first budget will cover the period 2016 to 2020, with new budgets being set every five years after that.

Welsh ministers will publish a report setting out their policies for meeting carbon budgets for each period. Measures in the bill will provide flexibility to enable ministers to amend targets and carbon budgets in response to new scientific evidence or international developments. Any changes should follow advice from the UK Committee on Climate Change or another body designated by the Welsh ministers.

Laws relating to the management of shellfish and marine licensing, together with flood risk management and land drainage will be clarified in the bill.

The Welsh government expects the bill to receive royal assent by spring 2016.

Welsh minister for natural resources Carl Sargeant said: "Including statutory climate change targets, underpinned by carbon budgeting in the bill will allow us to better drive progress, provide certainty for investment and drive forward the low-carbon economy in Wales.

"This step, together with the requirements for sustainable management of our resources will help to ensure Wales has a prosperous economy alongside a healthy and resilient environment."

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