Reducing Waste - How Can We Do Better?

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Download the Summary Consultation Document

Consultation closed 17 September 2018

Our communities generate a lot of waste and about 62,000 tonnes from Nelson and Tasman ends up in the landfill each year.

We know that well over half of that waste could be dealt with in a better way by being re-used, recycled or composted – or avoided in the first place.

The Nelson City and Tasman District councils are working together to minimise and manage waste in our region.

We’ve developed a plan to guide us – but we can’t make a big impact on our own. Everyone has a part to play in re-using and recycling the resources we have, reducing waste and protecting our environment from its effects.

We need to hear from you. Are we on the right track with the draft plan? Is there more we could do? What part can you play?

About the Nelson Tasman Waste Management and Minimisation Plan

This year’s review is guided by our overarching vision – “The communities of the Nelson Tasman region work together to reduce waste".

We’re proposing a greater focus on a whole-of-community approach, recognising that the councils can only achieve the best results by working alongside the community. We need everyone to work together to bring real change.

In the past we have focused on waste reduction as our number one priority. Now we plan to make avoiding waste the highest priority.

The waste plan broadly outlines how we are going to encourage waste reduction and manage our community’s waste. It has to be updated every six years.

Our goals are to work with the community to:

  • Avoid the creation of waste
  • Improve efficiency of resource use
  • Reduce the harmful effects of waste

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Key Documents

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A Load of Rubbish

We estimate more than half of what goes into the landfill could be either re-used, recycled or composted instead. The good news is that together we already divert about 12,000 tonnes of material every year through Council kerbside recycling collections and green waste services – which is a great start.

Let’s take a look at what we’re throwing out. An audit of landfill waste in Nelson and Tasman gives us an idea of the type of rubbish people put in the bin.

Waste Pie Chart 2018 crop lge

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Where We’re Heading

The draft plan outlines a series of objectives we think we should work towards. Have we got these about right?

We want to:

  • Develop a culture in our community where avoiding waste is the everyday choice
  • Work together collaboratively
  • Make sure the community has access to good information
  • Make sure our communities have access to a wide range of services that provide an alternative to the landfill
  • Improve the quality and quantity of material diverted from the landfill
  • Support and encourage product stewardship, where manufacturers and retailers take greater responsibility for a product throughout its life-cycle
  • Make sure everyone has easy access to facilities for waste that has to go to landfill, and
  • Manage our facilities and services to avoid negative effects on our communities and the environment and to keep people safe

We can only make these things happen if the whole community works together – that includes individuals, households, iwi, community groups and businesses.

There are some ideas about how we can achieve these objectives in the draft plan, with most of the initiatives to be developed over time. The draft plan is enabling, to guide us as we work on a more detailed action plan with the community to achieve our goals.

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The Costs of Disposal

The charges you pay for waste disposal go towards:

  • Landfill operational costs
  • Covering the costs of waste disposal
  • Central government waste levies and payments for greenhouse gas emissions
  • Waste management and minimisation initiatives in the region.

Waste Rubbish Bag lge crop

Cost breakdown of an 8kg rubbish bag (retail $2.20)

As you can see in the graphic, payments to central government and the councils make up a significant proportion of landfill disposal fees. Revenue from these fees enable the councils to provide waste minimisation and management services.

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The Waste Hierarchy

This diagram illustrates our proposed approach to waste management and minimisation.

Waste hierarchy graphic

We’d prefer to spend our time and energy avoiding waste rather than disposing of it.

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Have Your Say

We need to know if you think we’re on the right track. Does the draft Nelson Tasman Waste Management and Minimisation Plan provide the right blueprint for avoiding and reducing waste in our region? What else should we consider?

Section 8 of the proposed plan sets out goals and objectives for all of our community. Some of the specific questions we’d like answered include: Do you think we have the right objectives? Are there any missing? Are they achievable?

Section 8 also sets out the proposed council policies – what we plan to do to meet the goals and objectives of the plan. Do you think we have these right? Are there any missing? Will these help our community to reduce waste?

We would also like to know if you are planning to make any changes to avoid or reduce waste in your household, business or organisation.

We encourage online submissions. There is some printed information available on request.


More information is available:

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