Welsh Government Environment Minister John Griffiths is urging local authorities in Wales to take advantage of the new The Collaborative Change Programme, which aims help them meet waste reduction and recycling targets
The Collaborative Change Programme will offer all Welsh councils the chance to benefit from significant additional specialist technical advice and support to help them plan for up to 15 years to show how they will meet the targets set out in Wales' waste strategy Towards Zero Waste in the most sustainable and efficient way.
The Welsh Government published its Municipal Sector Plan for waste, supported by the Collections Blueprint, in March 2011, and closed consultation on its Collections, Infrastructure and Markets Plan in June 2011 and is the is the only country in the UK to introduce statutory targets for municipal recycling.
The Minister said: "The introduction of statutory targets and the escalation of landfill costs mean that local authorities have a strong economic imperative to reduce municipal waste and increase recycling rates. This programme will give participating councils access to the highest standard of advice and support, which will give them the best possible chance of reaching their targets.
"I commend the collaborative approach which lies at the heart of this programme, and which is emblematic of the Welsh way of managing our waste. I call on local authorities to register their interest, and urge them to play their part in reducing Wales' waste burden."
The programme's support package will be delivered by WRAP Cymru with support from the Welsh Local Government Association as well as the Welsh Government.
WRAP Cymru programme manager Beth Winkley said: "WRAP Cymru is ideally placed to work alongside the WLGA and Welsh Government to lead the delivery of the Collaborative Change Programme. The decade of experience we have working alongside English local authorities will be tailored to meet the needs of Welsh Authorities. Wales has robust targets to eliminate avoidable waste and I am delighted that WRAP Cymru will be right alongside Welsh Authorities as they rise to the challenge."
Councillor Dyfed Edwards, WLGA Environment Spokesperson, added: "The WLGA has been working with the Welsh Government and WRAP to develop this programme. There are challenging statutory targets to be met and all authorities are working hard towards them. The programme will provide a range of practical support tailored to the specific needs of an authority, helping to overcome barriers they face to achieving higher rates of recycling."