Environmental Affairs, Forestry and Fisheries invites comment on 3rd National Waste Management Strategy

Public comment invited on 3rd National Waste Management Strategy

Members of the public are invited to submit comments and inputs on the Draft 3rd National Waste Management Strategy.

The revised and updated Strategy was published in Government Gazette 42879 (Notice No. 1561) on 3 December 2019 as a requirement of the Waste Act to establish the National Wast Management Strategy (NWMS) and the review the strategy every five years. It builds on the successes and lessons learnt from the implementation of the National Waste Management Strategy since 2011.

The NWMS provides government policy and strategic interventions in the waste sector that are intended to create an enabling environment for the projects identified during the 2017 Chemicals and Waste Phakisa. These projects contribute to the national goals of sustainable economic growth, job creation and social transformation.

The 3rd National Waste Management Strategy has atits centre, the Circular Economy an approach to minimising the environmental impact of economic activities by reducing, reusing, recycling and repurposing waste and processing waste as materials to manufacture other products. This minimises the need to extract vergin raw materials and the practice to dispose of waste, and includes all areas of value chain, ranging from product design, production to packaging, distribution, use and disposal.

The revised Strategy has been released together with a Status Quo Assessment of Waste Management in South Africa and a State of Waste Report that updates the National Waste Information Baseline Report of 2012. These documents provide the strategic context including a review of the implementation of the 2011 Strategy and statistical evidence to inform the latest revision.

The NWMS provides a summary of the key issues facing the waste sector that it seeks to address, outlines new strategic goals to provide a simpler conceptual structure to manage waste, deals with sustainable waste services, waste awareness and compliance, and the roles and responsibilities of stakeholders.

The revision comes at a time when there is growing knowledge and awareness of the environmental consequences of human activity in relation to the climate and environmental pollution. The widespread impact of plastics on the coasts, rivers and wetlands is cause for concern, thus the inclusion of approaches to reduce littering and illegal dumping, and the use of single-use plastics.

The success of the National Waste Management Strategy depends on the extent to which it finds commitment and support in local and provincial government, and the private sector.

Source: Government of South Africa