Talks aimed at more than doubling Ireland's recycling rate for construction and demolition waste kicked off in Dublin today, with the launch of a special, multi-sectoral task force. The group has until next July to present the government with a voluntary programme plus implementation timetable for increasing recycling. Its formation follows a major government policy statement on waste last October, which included a call for recycling of construction and demolition waste to be lifted from the current 35% to at least 50% within five years and at least 85% within 15 years (ENDS Daily 1 October 1998). In a statement released today, Irish environment minister Noel Dempsey welcomed the initiative's launch and expressed confidence that it would "allow the key players in the sector, who are best placed to identify effective, least-cost solutions, to develop a voluntary producer responsibility initiative to meet these targets." Mr Dempsey noted that recovery rates approached 90% in some EU member states and said he saw "no compelling reason why the Irish construction sector cannot achieve a comparable performance".
Enterprise Ireland, tel: +353 1 857 0000; Irish environment ministry, tel: +353 1 888 2000.
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