Monday, 26 September 2022

Cheaper and Smarter: Samobor Waste Disposal Idea Outshines Zagreb

September the 26th, 2022 - Much has been said about the City of Zagreb's new and somewhat questionable waste disposal plans for next month, but the Samobor waste disposal ideas are cheaper, smarter, and will likely function far better in reality than the plans here in the capital.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, Zagreb's new waste disposal plans have been deemed good in theory but likely to fail in practice, both in terms of technical feasibility and finances, as well as in terms of legality. Samobor, on the other hand, says that they have devised a much more functional and cheaper system with the use of waste metres that is also applicable in the capital.

Komunalac Samobor is introducing a completely new waste collection system in the first half of next year, and the biggest innovation is the expansion of the separate waste collection area to the entire area and waste metres for multi-apartment buildings.

Collections throughout the city

The Samobor waste disposal plan will be carried out by using large common containers for multi-residential buildings that will record every waste insertion. In this way, the waste metre will monitor the disposal for each user and enable the creation of monthly bills according to the amount of waste actually delivered.

For the first time, separate waste collection is being introduced throughout the city, and residents living in family homes will receive special bins for plastic, paper and mixed municipal waste.

Households will pay 10.60 euros per month for the service, and non-households will pay a slightly higher 11.98 euros. The mayor of Samobor, Petra Skrobot, explained that this is a model that was established by combining good practices that were observed in several locations across Croatia and abroad.

"We didn't research all the cities, but as far as I know, not a single city in Croatia that belongs to the 'big' category has this kind of waste management system," the mayor pointed out, adding that the waste metres themselves will cost around four million kuna, of which one million kuna will be derived from EU funds. There will of course also be other costs involved, she said, such as the modernisation of the vehicle fleet, but they would have to do that anyway because they currently have trucks still doing this job that are over twenty years old.

Komunalac director Renato Raguz pointed out that unlike other cities, especially Zagreb, Samobor's waste management system isn't adapted to the service provider but to the citizens themselves. People don't need to finance the construction of waste boxes from the reserve, as is the case in Zagreb, they don't need to buy plastic bags, and Samobor's Komunalac will take care of the containers, waste metres and system control.

Raguz added that before the preparation of the price list, they managed to make some savings within Komunalac, and even if nothing had changed, the expenses of the waste management service would have been 50% higher than the income.

"With this new Samobor waste disposal system, we foresee numerous price reductions that serve as additional motivation for users when sorting and separating their waste. In particular, the price will be reduced for everyone who composts their waste by 1 to 3 euros, depending on the area, and there will even be a 50 percent reduction of the variable part of the price which will be available to those who have children up to two years old, due to the need to dispose of nappies. The same will apply to adults with incontinence," concluded Raguz.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Monday, 26 September 2022

Croatian Recycling Practices, Waste Disposal Better But Far from EU Goals

September the 26th, 2022 - The Croatian recycling trend, as well as that of the proper sorting and disposal of waste, has been increasing in recent years. It is still very far from the European Union's (EU) goals, however.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Borivoje Dokler writes, back in 2021, a massive 1,766,560 tonnes of municipal waste were generated across Croatia, which brought the total amount back to the value of what it was in 2018, according to the report on municipal waste of the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development. Compared to the previous year of 2020, this represents an increase of four percent.

"If we look at the annual amount of municipal waste per inhabitant, it amounted to 454 kilograms, which is the highest value in the observed period from 1995 to 2021. This can be attributed in part to the 2021 population census, which resulted in significantly lower values ​​than the EUROSTAT population estimates used in previous years," the report stated.

One of the significant factors that influenced the increase in the total amount of generated municipal waste is the greater activity of the service sector after slowing down or closing during 2020 due to the emergence of the global coronavirus pandemic.

The Ministry also pointed out that in 2021, the continuous implementation of educational and informative activities aimed at raising peoples' level of awareness about their role in the creation and prevention of waste generation and the separation of waste at the point of generation continued.

Investments are being made in the infrastructure for the proper separate collection of municipal waste, such as containers for such collection from the doorstep, the construction of recycling yards, the procurement of vehicles, the construction of sorting facilities, etc., which resulted in an increase in the number of local self-government units (LGUs) with separate collection (from 514 to 519).

As such, the share of separately collected municipal waste stood at 43 percent, or 761,683 tonnes, and the share of mixed municipal waste in the collected waste was 57 percent, or 1,004,877 tonnes, the report states.

In 2021, there was also an increase in the number of LGUs across the country in which the separate collection of biowaste from municipal waste was carried out. The aforementioned activity was carried out in 39 percent of LGUs, or 215 LGUs, which is 23 LGUs more than in the previous year. 122,175 tonnes of biowaste from municipal waste were collected separately, equal to 25 percent of the estimated total amount (494,583 tonnes), which is an increase of 1 percentage point compared to 2020.

As a result, we now have ample room to talk about the risk of not achieving the national Goal 1.3. from the Waste Management Plan of the Republic of Croatia for the period 2017-2022 (PGO RH) prescribed for the separate collection of bio-waste.

The result of further investment in the opening and equipping of new recycling yards in 2021 is visible in the increase in the number of active recycling yards from 186 to 201. There has also been an increase in the amount of municipal waste collected through recycling yards by 5 percent compared to the previous year. Back in 2021, recycling yards received a total of 63,173 tonnes of municipal waste. Bulky waste (41 percent), wood waste (19 percent), and paper and cardboard (9 percent) were collected the most. This points to Croatian recycling habits being better than they once were.

Of the total amount of separately collected municipal waste (all types of municipal waste except mixed municipal waste), 560,129 tonnes were recovered, while the amount of actually recycled waste amounted to 555,320 tonnes (removed impurities and non-targeted materials). Thus, the municipal waste recovery rate in 2021 stood at 32 percent, and the recycling rate stood at 31 percent, which is 2 percentage points more than in 2020, when the recycling rate was 29 percent.

The counties with the best results are Medjimurje County (40 percent), Koprivnica-Krizevci County (33 percent) and Varazdin County (31 percent), and the counties with the lowest recovery rate within the framework of public services are Lika-Senj County (2 percent) and Zadar County (2 percent).

After adding up the additionally determined quantities and estimates (waste from the service sector, waste collected within the framework of the national system for special categories of waste organised by the Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency Fund (FZOEU) and the quantities reported by retailers, the highest estimated recovery rates and further are recorded for Medjimurje County (55 percent), Varazdin County (48 percent), Koprivnica-Krizevci County (45 percent) and the City of Zagreb (41 percent), while the counties with the lowest recovery rates are still Lika-Senj County (19 percent ) and Zadar County (20 percent).

The amount of biodegradable municipal waste deposited in landfills across the Republic of Croatia was 594,107 tonnes. Thus, the goal from Article 55 of the ZGO related to the reduction of biodegradable municipal waste disposal has not yet been achieved.

For more on Croatian recycling and waste disposal habits, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Monday, 11 July 2022

Jarun Divers Remove 700kg of Waste Dumped in Popular Zagreb Lake

July the 11th, 2022 - Jarun divers recently recovered a disgraceful 700kg of rubbish from the bottom of this popular central Zagreb lake as part of a wider environmental action - Think Green.

As Morski writes, a recently held environmental action Think Green/Misli Zeleno has had significant and positive effects on the community, working to further raise the public's general levels of awareness of the importance of environmental protection and the relationship between man and nature. This was the joint conclusion of all the participants of the 27th edition of the project organised by the Diving Club to clean the sea and various lakes throughout the Republic of Croatia.

This weekend, the action was aimed at cleaning Zagreb's much loved Jarun lake, with Jarun divers removing more than 700 kilograms of different types of waste from the bottom of the lake from six different locations.

The group of Jarun divers, 55 of them in total, found and removed tyres, sunken canoes and other such vessels, various cables, plastic bottles and cans and similar materials that have no place whatsoever in the environment or at the bottom of a lake. All of the collected waste was then properly disposed of by the CIOS group, a long-term active partner of the Think Green project.

A total of 80 Jarun divers and other volunteers participated in the action - members of the Diving Club Roniti se mora Zagreb, the Diving Club AdriatiCro Zagreb, the Public Fire Department of the City of Zagreb, KPA Drava - Varazdin, KPA Vodomar - Duga Resa, Diving Club Agramsub, DVD Legrad, the Fire Department of Sveta Nedelja and numerous other volunteers.

Support was provided by the Fund for Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency, National Geographic Croatia (Hrvatska), INA d.d., Jamnica, Mares, Garmin, Zagrebacke pekarne KLARA d.d. and the media sponsors Scubalife magazine, Scuba Skener and

Satisfaction with this cooperation, which has been ongoing since the very beginning of the Think Green project, was emphasised by the editor-in-chief of National Geographic Hrvatska Hrvoje Prcic during the official opening of the action at Jarun lake, in the presence of the representative of the Mayor of the City of Zagreb, Goran Petrovic.

The results of this environmental campaign over the past decade indicate positive trends and a more responsible approach of Croatia's inhabitants towards protecting the environment, which confirms the importance of the continuous holding of educational and environmental actions, and certainly provides the organisers with an incentive for further socially responsible activities.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Friday, 20 May 2022

Koprivnica City Council Introducing Penalties for Improper Waste Disposal

May the 20th, 2022 - The Koprivnica city council is set to introduce harsh cash penalties for those cause dumping waste in inappropriate places (fly-tipping) and disposing of waste in an inappropriate manner in the provided containers.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, cash penalties are being prepared for individuals and households in Koprivnica who don't comply with the decisions on municipal waste collection. The proposal of the new decision specifies exactly what the punishments will be, and what they'll be issued for exactly. Changes with contractual penalties have yet to be approved by the Koprivnica City Council, and should take effect on August the 1st, 2022, as reported by local portal

The Koprivnica City Council penalties explained:

- If a user doesn't hand over the municipal waste collected via the appropriate waste container at least once in two months, a contractual penalty shall be charged in the amount of 0.10 kuna per litre of the contracted container's capacities.

- If a user doesn't allow Komunalac (the communal company) full access to the waste container at the agreed location from which waste is taken away when that place is not in a public area, a contractual penalty shall be charged in the amount of 100 kuna for each unrealised removal time.

- If the treatment of waste collected endangers human health or leads to the scattering of waste around the container or causes discomfort to another person due to the smell of said scattered waste, a contractual penalty will be charged in the amount of 100 kuna for each such treatment of the waste at the billing point.

- If a user acts irresponsibly with the waste container (such as causing damage to or destroying the container), a contractual penalty will be charged depending on the volume: for a container of of 80 l and 120 l, the fine will stand at 350 kuna; for a 240 l container, the fine is 400 kuna; for a 360 l container, the fine is 750 kuna; for a container of 1100 l the fine is 2100 kuna in total.


- If the user fails to hand over hazardous municipal waste separately, to the recycling yard or mobile recycling yard, or does not handle it in accordance with the regulations governing the management of a special category of waste, the contractual penalty is charged in the amount of HRK 500 for each such case

- If a user fails to hand over mixed municipal waste, recyclable municipal waste, bulky waste or biowaste at the place of origin separetely, or doesn't classify the waste in the containers in accordance with their purpose, a contractual penalty is charged in the amount of 250 kuna for each case of incorrect classification

- If a user doesn't compost biowaste at the place of origin, and it is stated that they compost it, a contractual penalty shall be charged in the amount of 250 kuna.

Written warnings from the Koprivnica City Council

The amount of a certain contractual penalty will be shown on the public service bill when it arrives. When several users use a common container for waste (such as in the case of residential buildings), the payment of the fine, in case the responsibility of a single individual isn't determined, will be borne by all of the users of the service who use a common container in accordance with the shares in the container's use, reports

If it is determined that the user of the service has committed several ''offences'' for which the obligation to pay a contractual penalty is prescribed, Komunalac will calculate and charge them a contractual penalty for each one of these offences.

The communal company may also issue a written warning to the user instead of a penalty, but only in case of first non-fulfillment, ie improper fulfillment of the obligation for which a contractual penalty is usually imposed or in case there are circumstances that justify such an omission, and which circumstances the user must prove.

At the next session, the Koprivnica City Council should make a decision to amend the current Decision on this matter which will put these new rules into force.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Thursday, 12 May 2022

Rogoznica Clamps Down on Waste Disposal Rules as Season Approaches

May the 12th, 2022 - Rogoznica, which always attracts quite a significant number of tourists from far and wide each and every summer tourist season, is clamping down firmly on waste disposal rules as the season rapidly approaches.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, last year was especially dramatic for the Rogoznica utility company Skovacin, which had to deal with piles of rubbish all over the place, and the problem with waste in all possible (and in impossible) places escalated when collections from the doorstep started. Bins were given only to those who were on the register and who pay for transportation properly, while the rest of the residents were left with roads, other people's fences, and environmentally protected areas in which to dump their rubbish, reports Sibenski portal.

According to municipal records, the then director Rogoznica's aforementioned communal company determined that as many as 700 owners of buildings, including apartment renters, simply did not pay and were never paying for proper garbage collection. A deeper look revealed that that figure was actually far higher. That's when the company and Rogoznica itself decided to take things further and alter things before 2022's tourist season flies around.

In order to function even better and be fully in line with EU laws and directives, a new Decision on the method of public service of municipal waste collection was adopted in Rogoznica, which prescribes detailed billing criteria, user categories, rubbish container sizes, the frequency of emptying those containers, the obligations which must be met by service providers and users, and so on. The method of recycling and collection of various waste for recycling is also prescribed in clear detail.

There are also contractual penalties. A fine of 300 to 1,000 kuna will need to be paid if, for example, other types of waste are disposed of in a recyclable waste container, if hazardous substances or recyclable waste are disposed of in a mixed municipal waste container or biowaste container, and an array of other rules are also now in place.

The biggest penalty will be paid by those who dispose of their rubbish into the environment or in a public space, also known as flytippers. The maximum fine for this offense stands at 3000 kuna.

For the Municipality of Rogoznica, there is another big problem being struggled with and that must be solved urgently. In the wider Rogoznica area, there is a lot of construction going on, houses are springing up at every step, so there is a tonne of construction waste lying around. It is unfortunately very often being irresponsibly disposed of in various places, mostly on private plots, artificial hills are being created, and it is being found along unclassified roads in the hinterland of the municipality.

At the last session of the Municipal Council, the new mayor Anita Zivkovic emphasised that this problem will now begin being seriously tackled. In addition to the Municipality of Rogoznica itself, the competent inspection services should also react promptly and in a timely manner.

For more, make sure to check out our lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 9 February 2022

Croatian Parliament Discusses Radioactive Waste Management

ZAGREB, 9 Feb 2022 - The problem of systematic radioactive waste management in Croatia will be resolved with the construction of a radioactive waste management facility, Žarko Katić, state secretary at the Ministry of the Interior, said in parliament on Wednesday.

Speaking during a discussion on the proposal to amend the Radiological and Nuclear Safety Act, Katić said that only low and medium radioactive waste from the medicine and science industry, as well as from the Krško nuclear power plant, would be disposed of in the future facility, and not highly radioactive spent nuclear fuel.

As for the low and medium radioactive waste from Krško, it is mostly disposable material worn by workers and discarded at the end of the day, he added.

Katić said that industrial and medical radioactive waste was currently disposed of in two storage facilities in Zagreb - the Ruđer Bošković Institute and the Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health. It currently amounts to 11.5 cubic metres and is expected to reach about 100 cubic metres by 2060.

With the waste from Krško, this amount will be an additional 1,130 cubic metres, and by the time Krško closes in 2043, it is estimated that it will have reached 1,780 cubic metres, Katić said.

MPs did not have any major objections to the proposal and, in light of the current energy crisis, a portion of them supported the use nuclear energy as clean energy.

"Nuclear energy is needed. It is clean and our future lies in nuclear energy," said Marin Miletić of the Bridge party. Darko Klasić of the Croatian Social Liberal Party (HSLS) agreed, saying that nuclear energy is "a clean, safe, competitive and low-carbon source of energy."

"The world has said yes to nuclear power plants. We need to have them because with growing consumption they are the only good, albeit not perfect, solution for now," said the Homeland Movement's Davor Dretar.

"I am sure that people in Dalmatia would not support the construction of a nuclear power station," said Social Democrat Renata Sabljar Dračevac, stressing that the use of nuclear energy in Croatia requires a national consensus.

Anka Mrak Taritaš (Civil and Liberal Alliance) also said that Croatia should declare its political view on nuclear energy.

Katić said there were three reasons why the present law needed amending - to align it with the law on the Fund for financing the decommissioning and disposal of radioactive waste and with EU directives, and to improve the system overall. He announced that a nuclear emergency response plan would be adopted soon.

For more, check out our dedicated politics section.

Tuesday, 26 October 2021

Less Waste, More Recycling, Croatian South Still Lagging Behind North

October the 26th, 2021 - The Croatian south is still very much lagging behind the northern part of the country in terms of waste disposal, recycling and proper management.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, the circular economy, ie waste management so that it is almost all completely recovered and reused as a raw material or fuel, has become a principle of development of the European Union's economy, which Croatia is trying to follow.

Ambitious EU targets call for at least 70 percent of municipal waste to be recycled by 2030, and for 2025 to ban the disposal of recyclable waste - plastics, metals, glass, paper, cardboard and biodegradable waste.

Problems in Zagreb...

Although official figures show that slightly more than 40 percent of waste is collected separately in Croatia, which is a prerequisite for recycling, skeptics say that less than 10 percent is actually recycled and recovered. Problems in the waste collection system are ubiquitous in Croatia, which we're able to witness every day with the example of Zagreb.

However, the current report on municipal waste from the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development says that in 2020, 1.69 million tonnes of municipal waste was generated, or 418 kilograms per capita. This is a decrease of 6.5 percent compared to the year before, and the most significant reductions were recorded for mixed municipal and packaging waste.

According to the competent ministry, one of the significant factors that influenced the reduction of the total amount of generated municipal waste is the coronavirus pandemic, which significantly reduced the work of the service sector in 2020 - closing restaurants, less tourism, a huge reduction in the number of overnight stays, etc.

The continuous implementation of educational activities aimed at raising citizens' overall awareness of their role in generating and preventing waste has additionally contributed to all improvements. At the same time, investments were made in the infrastructure for the separate collection of municipal waste, such as containers for separate collection from the doorstep, the construction of recycling yards, the installation of containers for separate collection in public areas, the procurement of vehicles and the construction of more sorting plants.

The share of mixed municipal waste in the collected stood at 59 percent - 998,807 tonnes. The share of separately collected municipal waste was 41 percent (694,160 tonnes). Although this is a negligible increase of 4 percent, it still lags behind the estimated planned dynamics.

Back in 2020, there was also an increase in the number of local self-government units (LGUs) in which the separate collection of biowaste from communal waste was carried out. This activity was carried out in 35 percent of local self-government units, ie 192 of them.

''This mainly regards biodegradable waste from kitchens and canteens and waste from gardens and parks. This is 118,692 tonnes or 24 percent of total generated municipal biowaste. Compared to pre-pandemic 2019, this represnts an increase of 22 percent, which still lags behind the plan for achieving the national goal,'' they emphasised from the relevant ministry.

Recycling yards reported a total of 60,146 t of municipal waste, which is 25 percent more. Bulky waste (42 percent), wood waste (22 percent) and biowaste (8 percent) were collected the most. The highest rates of recovery of municipal waste collected under the organisation of local self-government units were recorded in Medjimurje County (47 percent), Koprivnica-Krizevci County (40 percent), Varazdin County (37 percent) and the City of Zagreb (36 percent), and the lowest was recorded in Lika-Senj County and Zadar County, with 3 percent each. This means that the Croatian south is still lagging quite a lot in this regard.

64,010 tonnes of municipal waste was received for composting in ten composting plants, and although the amount of compost didn't change when compared to 2019, there was a significant increase in the quantities received by 57 percent. During 2020, a total of 941.3 thousand tonnes or 56 percent of the total generated municipal waste ended up in landfills.

In addition to 56 percent of municipal waste being sent for disposal and 34 percent sent for recovery, 9 percent of municipal waste was sent to mechanical-biological waste treatment plants (MBO plants), while the remaining 1 percent went to some other pre-treatment procedures.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Monday, 20 September 2021

More Than 1.2 Million Rubbish Containers Placed in Croatian Locations

September the 20th, 2021 - 407 Croatian locations (cities and municipalities) received containers for separate waste collection from households that were procured and distributed through the Fund for Environmental Protection and Energy Efficiency recently.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/PD and VL native tim writes, to be more precise, Croatian locations received 1,230,695 various bins and containers of various volumes for the separate collection of paper, plastic, biowaste and other recyclable waste.

The containers were procured as part of a project with a total investment of around 370 million kuna, and the vast majority of this amount was provided through EU funds through the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development.

“Logistically speaking, this was a very demanding project. After the public procurement procedure was carried out and contracts were signed with the selected bidders, a schedule of activities was made and deadlines for their execution were agreed.

In the Environmental Protection Sector, several teams have been formed that have been on the ground almost every day for the past six months and in constant communication with representatives of local governments, utilities and suppliers,'' explained Aleksandra Cilic, pointing out that despite all of the unprecedented challenges the coronavirus pandemic and the earthquake presented, this project has been successfully implemented on time.

She added that they also had the professional support of other sectors and services from within the same fund, which took on a lot of work and without whose help this project couldn't have been successfully implemented.

"Now that almost every household will have the proper containers for separate waste collection, no one will have an alibi or an excuse not to do so," said Cilic.

The rate of separate waste collection from Croatia is encouragingly growing from year to year. According to the data for last year, it amounted to 41 percent, and it is to be expected that the result for this year will be even better with this newly purchased and distributed communal infrastructure.

According to Cilic, the number of Croatian household properly separating their household waste will certainly grow, but education at all levels is crucial - from utility companies engaged in the processes involved to regular citizens.

"This summer, a video of an Italian tourist who wanted to throw his plastic packaging in the designated waste container spread across social media, but after he lifted the lid, he was unpleasantly surprised when he saw that all the waste had ended up being placed in the same bag. Unfortunately, such a reckless practice of some utility companies puts a dampener on all the efforts made to establish a waste management system and it undermines public confidence in the same system,'' stated Cilic.

Regardless of such isolated cases, it is crucial that people collect and dispose of their waste separately because all useful components, especially paper, plastic, glass and bio-waste are all properly recycled or composted. It is therefore necessary to transform a take-use-discard linear economy into a true circular economy, which is why thinking about sustainable circular systems needs to be implemented across all activities and sectors, including policies, products, production processes and business models. Education and public information play a key role in all this, and many Croatian locations now having the proper means should mean there can be no more excuses.

For more, make sure to check out our lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 31 August 2021

Greens Raise Voice Against Planned Waste Incinerator in Sisak

ZAGREB, 31 Aug, 2021 - The Green Action and the "Sisak isn't a waste disposal site" civil initiative have called on the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development to discard the plan to build a waste and residual sludge incinerator in Sisak, which is a seismologically active area.

The NGOs said that citizens had stood in defence of public interest in Zagreb and Konjščina when they stopped the construction of a waste incinerator there and that they will do the same for Sisak.

They are disgruntled because an environmental impact study justifying the construction of the incinerator in Sisak was put up for public debate from 2 to 31 August, a period of summer holidays.

They warned that waste from all over Croatia would be brought to the incinerator in Sisak that will have a capacity of 100,000 tonnes of waste and 50,000 tonnes of residual sludge, and it could have unforeseeable economic, ecological and health hazards.

They further pointed out that Croatia was turning to outdated solutions while the EU's Green Deal stimulates refraining from incinerators and encourages the use of sustainable solutions to use waste as a secondary crude material for industrial production.

Incineration would pose a potential threat to the environment and health of Sisak's residents because the environmental impact study ignored the fact that fires have erupted at waste incinerators throughout the EU as have excessive levels of hazardous gas emissions.

"The incinerator must not be an alternative for waste as a consequence of the failed attempt with waste management centres. It is necessary to change the way combined waste is managed and follow the principles of circular economy that treats waste as a resource and not as rubbish transformed into toxic waste," the NGOs said.

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Friday, 9 July 2021

Every Croatian Resident Responsible for 414 KG of Waste Yearly

July the 9th, 2021 - Each and every Croatian resident disposes of a shocking amount of waste every single year, with each person being responsible for approximately 414 kilograms of rubbish on an annual basis.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, back in pandemic-dominated 2020, a massive 1,680,428 tonnes of municipal waste were generated, ie 414 kilograms per capita, according to the preliminary review of the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development on municipal waste in the Republic of Croatia for 2020, which contains information on generated waste and separate collection at the national level.

This is a decrease of 7 percent when compared to the total amount of municipal waste from pre-pandemic 2019. Significant reductions in quantities were recorded for mixed municipal waste and packaging waste. 686,475 tonnes of municipal waste were collected separately, and the rate of separate collection was 41 percent, which is an increase of 4 percent when compared to 2019. The Ministry pointed out that this is the result of significant investments in infrastructure for waste separation and the general education of the population on such matters.

From back in 2016 until today, through two open calls/invitations from within the Competitiveness and Cohesion Operational Programme, 213 projects for Croatian recycling yards have been approved, co-financed in the amount of 85 percent with European Union funds, and the total allocated funds for this amount to a staggering 465 million kuna.

More than 3 million Croatian residents were covered through 91 projects for the implementation of educational and information activities, with 53.6 million kuna in grants being officially approved for these projects. 315 million kuna in non-refundable EU funds were invested in the primary waste selection, which makes up 85 percent of the investment for the procurement of 1,230,695 pieces of bins and containers for separate waste collection for 407 local self-government units.

In addition, the construction of sorting plants, composting plants, the procurement of vehicles for separate waste collection and money for dealing with landfills were all also co-financed. All this directly contributes to the achievement of the goals of increasing the rate of separate collection and recycling of waste and reducing landfills. It is crucial that everyone, from each Croatian resident through to local self-government units to the national level, continue to work every day to establish a waste management system in order to continue this positive trend and achieve good results based on developing a circular economy and reducing environmental pressure.

For more, follow our lifestyle section.