The Limerick/Clare/Kerry Region, through the Regional Waste Management office, has signed up to participate in a European wide waste recycling project.
The region has become an active partner in the ‘Regions 4 Recycling’ Interreg IVC European project, a partnership initiative comprising 12 European Regions with the ambitious target to promote regional contributions towards a European Recycling Society.
“Under the project, local authorities in Clare, limerick and Kerry will join other participating authorities in making performance comparisons via a common methodology and exchange of good practices in order to improve their recycling performances,” explained Philippa King, Regional Waste Co-ordinator, Limerick/Clare/Kerry Regional Waste Management Office.
Ms. King added: “European municipalities are subject to common EU waste management regulations but have taken different approaches to reach the recycling targets. Differences between the recycling performances are evident, ranging from less than 10 % to more than 70 % from one region to another. Some of the differences can be accounted for by different data compilation practices between regions.”
The ‘Regions 4 Recycling’ (R4R) project is led by the Ile-de-France Region Waste Management Observatory (ORDIF). Meanwhile, the overall project communication is managed by ACR+ and the technical component is coordinated by the Public Waste Agency of Flanders (OVAM).
The 3-year project aims to work on a common framework for waste data observation, selective collection and recycling rates where by assessing the local instruments (technical, economic or legal) with the aim to reduce the recycling performance gap between the EU regions.
“With a budget for R4R of 2.2 million euros over three years, three quarters of which arise from European funds, we will be able to act, starting with capitalising on the experience of the partners,” said Eric Chevaillier, President of ORDIF.
Olivier De Clercq, Secretary General of ACR+ stated: “This project is also about creating solidarity between regions with very different context and performances. It is encouraging to see that the current ‘best European performers” only started to implement their waste management strategy 15 years ago and today it is possible to move even faster, based on the accumulated experience and the new instruments available .”
According to Henny De Baets, Administrator-General of OVAM: “Thanks to the participation of OVAM in this project, we can share our experience of selective collection and recycling of household waste with our European partners. In addition, we still learn from our partners, in order to further enhance the Flemish waste policy, and to achieve even sooner the transition to a sustainable material policy.”
The project was officially launched at a conference on 18th April in Paris bringing together the different partners and issues of waste management and their shared observation, in the presence of the European Commission, the French Ministry for Environment and ADEME (French Agency for the Environment and Energy Management). A two day kick off meeting followed including a site visit to a regional sorting plant with the participation of all Partners.
The 13 partners are: Ile-de-France Region Waste Management Observatory (France), ACR+ the Association of Cities and Regions for Recycling and Sustainable Resource Management (Belgium), OVAM the Public Waste Agency of Flanders (Belgium), Odense Waste Management (Denmark), Municipality of Lisbon (Portugal), EFXINI Poli (Greece), Limerick County Council (Ireland), Province of Styria (Austria), Municipality of Tallinn (Estonia), Waste Agency of Catalonia (Spain), Municipality of Sofia (Bulgaria), Municipality of Zagreb (Croatia), Ilfov County Council (Romania).
The Limerick/Clare/Kerry Region, through the R4R project, is aiming to optimize its waste management practices, through exchange of good practices and to achieve higher recycling rates with the ability to benchmark Ireland with the partners across Europe.