Waste is growing in our district. Since May 2016, we’ve been sending glass picked up at the kerbside for recycling in Queenstown to landfill. Now Alexandra kerbside glass is going to landfill too.

We need a bold vision to move towards zero waste. And we need to make sure that contracts for services are designed to get the best outcomes for the community, not just the cheapest cost.

This is your chance to have a say on the future of waste in our district. QLDC’s and CODC’s Waste Minimisation and Management Plans are now out in draft form and they want your feedback.

Queenstown Lakes District Council WMMP here

Central Otago District Council WMMP here (scroll down the page to the Current CODC Consultations table)

What is a Waste Minimisation and Management Plan?

Every six years, councils make a new Waste Minimisation and Management Plan.  It sets out their priorities for waste minimisation, recycling and waste management, including what they’re going to do and how much money they’re going to spend on it.

Do I get a say?

Yes. The draft plans are now out for public submissions. You can put in a submission any time until 30th April.

How do I put in a submission?

Go to the council’s website – and follow the link on the home page. If you feel strongly about what’s happening with waste, ask to be heard when you put in your written submission. That means you will get a few minutes to speak about your submission at the public hearings on the draft plan, which will make your views more memorable.

What kind of things could I talk about in my submission?

A good place to start is to write down what you think about the current services provided by council eg rubbish collections, recycling collections, drop-off depots and waste reduction projects (like Dr Compost, Enviroschools and the Bokashi Bucket subsidy). What is working well, what can be improved, and what would you like to see more (or less) of?

It’s also helpful if you talk about the big picture and what you think the priorities should be for waste minimisation, recycling and waste management over the next six years.

What is Wastebusters going to say in their submission?

  1. The council needs to take a bolder stand and make waste reduction (and moving towards zero waste) their first priority in the plan. Unless our community tackles waste at source, we will spend more and more money dealing with it once it’s made, whether through recycling, commercial composting or rubbish services

2. To achieve waste reduction, the council needs to commit to a partnership approach and work closely with community groups, social enterprise, businesses, other councils and central government.

3. Contracts have to be designed to achieve the best outcomes for the district, not to get the cheapest service possible. We need to learn from and improve on past recycling contracts which have ended up being expensive ways of sending recycling to landfill (eg kerbside glass collected for recycling in both Queenstown and Alexandra is being sent to landfill at the moment).