The Bill is aimed at reducing the emphasis on residual waste management and a move towards more recycling and reuse.

It also provides for the introduction of a levy on incineration.

Environment, Heritage and Local Government minister, John Gormley, T.D., said: “I want waste to be seen as a resource rather than as a problem.

“I believe if we view it as a resource, it can contribute to economic recovery, as it is put to new and innovative uses.

“This Bill once enacted, will contribute to ensuring waste is diverted from landfill, through higher landfill levies. It will also encourage the development of alternative technologies to make the most of what is a valuable resource.”

The Bill also allows for more flexibility in the setting of the levy on plastic bags although the Department of the Environment said there were no plans currently to do so.

The purpose of the Bill is to provide for increased penalties and a new scheme of graduated fixed payment notices for offences under the Air Pollution Act 1987 and amends the Waste Management Acts 1996-2003.

Alison Brown

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