Published: 26.04.2016. 12:28 Updated: 26.04.2016. 14:11
„Circular economy ensures efficient resource management, higher level of conservation of the environment and creation of new jobs. We are talking about a concept that would, according to estimates at the level of the European Union, create around 600 000 jobs in the waste sector by 2030. In Croatia several thousand new jobs could be created. We should treat waste in a responsible manner. This means that used products should not be discarded, but prepared for re-use and recycling. We have started with improvements to the existing waste management system which will make this possible. We are finalising the new Waste Management Plan which for Croatia will be a step forward towards circular economy“ – said the Minister of Environmental and Nature Protection Slaven Dobrović today in his opening address to the participants of the Croatia Waste Expo 2016 conference.
Circular economy was the main topic of the conference since late last year the European Commission presented the new circular economy package. The benefits of circular economy are numerous. Resources are managed more efficiently and dependence on import is reduced, which is very important for the EU since Europe is a continent poor in raw materials. The environment is polluted less and new jobs are created. In this new package it is, among other, proposed that by 2030 the entire EU should recycle 65% of municipal waste.
For Croatia to be in a position to meet the challenges of circular economy it is necessary to improve the existing waste management system. Minister Dobrović stressed that the concept he advocated took into account the waste management hierarchy and was in line with the principles of circular economy.
„The system we are working on was proven in practice. It provides cities and municipalities with sustainable prices of municipal services, sustainable resource management, creation of new jobs“ – explained Dobrović.
The Minister pointed out that the new Waste Management Plan will be focused on home composting, strengthening of the separate collection system with material recovery facilities, as well as re-use centres.
An improved waste management system would ensure a quicker development of circular economy in Croatia. Conditions would be created for development of companies in the sector of recycling, particularly plastics, and manufacture of necessary equipment. However, in order to achieve this cooperation is necessary at all levels, and great responsibility lies with cities and municipalities which have the duty to ensure separate collection of waste for their citizens.