NATIONAL ECOLOGY PROJECT CANNOT SOLVE THE PROBLEM OF WASTE
In terms of waste treatment, the National Ecology Project is contrary to the applicable laws and the President's instructions. The implementation of the Complex System of Solid Municipal Waste (SMW) Treatment within the scope of the National Project in its current form will result in wastage of about RUB 300 billion, and will not help to address the problem comprehensively, which may entail rather adverse consequences, given the growing "waste" protests and the deteriorating waste crisis.
The main focus in the Project is on the construction of large capacities for sorting and recycling of commingled solid municipal waste without specifying any target indicators or measures for reducing waste formation, which are the highest-priority areas in the state waste treatment policy (Clause 2, Article 3.89, Federal Law "On Waste"). There are also no measures for separate collection of waste, including food waste, at the source of its origin. The National Project tells nothing about what is done to non-recyclable waste that will not be sorted or will be sorted without disposal.
All this will lead to further growth of dumps and garbage incineration, while the emergence of large sorting and recycling companies and a non-profit organization — single integrator — may prevent the development of a free recycling market and small and medium-sized business.
"We need to address the reasons, not the consequences of the waste problem. To that end, the National Project should provide for the implementation of all the priorities of the state waste treatment policy, and the most significant measures and resources, including financial, should be directed to the areas of the highest priority. By focusing on the methods of the least priority, including the sorting of commingled waste and incineration, we only strengthen our inferiority to progressive countries pursuing the goal of 'zero waste' and implementing the principles of cycle economy at the national level," Igor Chestin, Director of WWF Russia, noted.
WWF insists on introducing penalties for industry regulators and federal subjects of Russia for non-compliance with the priorities of the state waste treatment policy.
The implementation of the National Project will entail a threat of Russia's technological inferiority. It is related to the fact that more and more countries increase the recycling level and impose bans on non-recyclable materials, pursuing the goal of "zero waste" without incineration, and in such a situation outdated technologies and facilities (incineration and non-recyclable waste production) will be more actively promoted in Russia. Considering the fact that today the recycling level does not exceed 6% in the aggregate for the country, it is obvious that the National Project in its current form will aggravate the garbage crisis.
resolve the problem of waste and effectively disburse the budget funds, the
National Ecology Project should include target indicators and specific measures
- Prevention and reduction of waste formation (including prohibition of non-recyclable and refractory containers and packaging, and their replacement for easy-to-process alternatives).
- Providing 100 % of population with infrastructure for separate collection of waste (including food waste) within easy reach and in public places; imposing a ban on dumping food and other compost waste.
- Law and tax regulation encouraging the use of priority methods of waste treatment in accordance with the state policy and discouraging the least-priority ones.
WWF Russia delved into every section of the Project and provided its proposals and recommendations on correcting the existing shortcomings.
Photo in the announcement: (c) Dmitry Chistoprudov / WWF Russia.