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Waste Management

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 16 June 2011

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Ceisteanna (55)

Luke 'Ming' Flanagan

Ceist:

55 Deputy Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government his views on the reports in the weekend newspapers regarding waste infrastructure which quoted the president of Covanta Europe when he stated that the situation had changed totally in Ireland with the new Government; and will he confirm or deny that he will be giving the green light to the incineration of waste here. [15557/11]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government)

I do not intend to comment on remarks attributed to executives of Covanta. My focus is on the development of waste policy. Following a period of uncertainty in this area under the previous Government, this administration's Programme for Government commits to the development of a coherent national waste policy which will aim to minimise waste disposal in landfill and maximise recovery. I am prioritising this commitment, as I am anxious to provide early regulatory certainty, in the form of both policy and legislation, to ensure that the necessary actions and investments are progressed to achieve those aims.

Our current over-reliance on landfill facilities is unsustainable and the move away from landfill must be accelerated. We must ensure that a range of infrastructure is available to treat the waste we generate in an environmentally appropriate manner. That process of infrastructural diversification must be guided not by a fixation in favour of or against any particular process or technology, but by a policy approach, consistent with the waste hierarchy, which creates the space within which the range of appropriate infrastructure that we need can be brought forward.

I look forward to engaging with parliamentary colleagues and the range of interests in the waste sector in the development of this policy framework. It is my intention to complete the policy development process by the end of this year.

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