As the Department moves forward to draft the national waste management plan, we urge them to pivot to a new way of looking at waste. Instead of planning for expansion of end of pipe solutions, such as waste to energy plants or cement kilns, Ireland must invest in more materials-based, regenerative approaches that write ‘waste’ out of the vernacular. Focus must now be on how to prevent the creation of waste, move towards a more circular approach through reuse/refill systems and ensure that material is in use as long as possible.

The Government published the Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy in September 2020. This new national waste policy provides direction for waste planning and management over the coming years. The previous national waste policy A Resource Opportunity focused on the delivery of national and EU targets while the new policy acknowledges the need to embed climate action in all strands of public policy.

This is our submission for that plan.