bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Wednesday 21.02.2018 | Name days: Eleonora, Ariadne
LatviaLatvia

Programme: EC warns – Latvia does not recycle enough waste

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUDue to insufficient volumes of recycled waste, European Commission’s Environment Directorate in Latvia has commenced an inspection procedure as part of an early-warning system, as reported by De Facto programme of LTV.

Because of this, it is likely Latvia may experience a more rapid climb of natural resource tax for waste storage to help liven up the recycling industry. If the problem is not fixed by 2020, the directorate will commence a violation procedure.

Currently only 27% of household waste is recycled. This volume now has to be doubled by 2020.

The programme notes that tens of millions provided by EU funds had been invested in the past to build new landfills. It is already clear – some of them were built too large, because the goal was to store as less waste as possible. Once that was done, money was diverted to the construction of recycling facilities, where waste is sorted shortly after collection.

In parallel to those processes, Europe’s directive has been active for a whole decade, inviting measures to ensure sorting of waste on site. If all residents sorted their waste, it would ensure better and faster recycling.

It is now necessary to search for new and more efficient methods for waste management to ensure that the volume of recycled waste can be doubled in a couple of years. If nothing is done – Latvia risks receiving serious sanctions. The EC directorate has commenced an inspection in Latvia for now.

«The European Commission wants to study the measures and steps Latvia has undertaken to ensure the aforementioned goal becomes reachable by 2020. It is a process that has been initiated because the term stated in the directive has come. If specific requirements are not met, it could mean sanctions,» said Environmental Protection and Regional Development Ministry’s deputy state secretary Alda Ozola.

The inspection was launched at the end of 2016. The final report and recommendations may come at the beginning of next year. The risk of failing to reach the established goal has been confirmed in 12 EU member states – Latvia, Estonia, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Malta, Croatia, and Spain.

Experts have worked with Latvia for nearly a year. Recommendations should be ready in several months. It is already clear, however, that natural resource tax will be increased more rapidly than in previous years. This also means that residents will have to pay more for waste management.

Ozola told De Facto: «They propose different measures, including raising natural resource tax for waste storage in landfills to reduce the desire to store waste. Instead, the government hopes to encourage doing something else with this resource. It is also proposed ensuring stricter supervision of the production responsibility systems.»

It is the production responsibility systems that have received the largest amount of attention from environmentalists and the media in recent months. The trader is relieved of natural resource tax if they sign a contract with a company that oversees production responsibility systems. Those companies have to collect and recycle a specific amount of waste. Two weeks ago, De Facto reported suspicions that behind appropriately put together documents may hide uncollected and non-recycled volumes of waste.

The system was being supervised by the Environmental Protection Fund from 2010 until 2016. Inspections primarily focused on comparing documents. ‘Documents were inspected and data was checked with independent sources. Documents detailed the flow and volumes of moved cargoes, which can be traced. This is especially important if waste was carried to third countries. We requested information from abroad, and we were provided,’ says Latvian Environmental Protection Fund director Jānis Rudzītis.

In the past seven years, the Environmental Protection Fund compiled a total of 65 violation reports. Only one business, however, was applied with a fine – EUR 234,670. Waste recycling facilities were inspected once a year. Whenever it was necessary to inspect companies, the State Environment Service was asked.

«Indirect signals about developments in the industry had been received from the ministry as well. The supervision model was changed as a result to have a single institution take charge – the State Environment Service,» said Ozola.

De Facto explains that the service had planned to finish inspections of all systems by October. However, inspections still have not finished – the process continues for two of the largest members of the system. In September, the State Environment Service halted the function of three companies and applied fines to them worth more than EUR 35 million.

Atis Treijs, head of the Waste Management office of State Environment Service’s Environmental Resources Management Department, believes the weakest part of this system is proof of regeneration.

Environmental Protection and Regional Development Ministry has plans for a number of activities to help reach the waste recycling goal and avoid sanctions from the European Commission. Municipalities will have to have at least one waste-sorting plant per 500 residents. The ministry has also returned to the idea of establishing of packaging deposit system.

Ref: 224.109.109.2559


Leave a reply

Dismissal requested for Latvia’s Finance Minister; parties worried about finance sector sinking deeper

Latvia’s Finance Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola has failed to prevent the decision made by United States Department of the Treasury, which is ruinous for the country’s financial sector and humiliating for its reputation, says chairman of New Conservative Party Jānis Bordāns.

Defence Ministry: a massive information campaign is being realized against Latvia

Considering events of the last several days in the country’s banking sector and the arrest of the governor of the Bank of Latvia – Ilmārs Rimšēvičs – it is entirely possible that someone is currently realizing a massive information operation. Its structure and execution is not unlike the one observed in USA, France and Germany during the pre-election period, BNN was told by Latvia’s Defence Ministry.

Latvian parliament to search for ways to dismiss current Bank of Latvia governor

Members of Latvia’s Saeima plan to search for a solution in the matter regarding the possible dismissal of the governor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs.

Bank of Latvia governor: I have received death threats

«This situation is incredibly complicated. This situation is quite possibly the most complicated one I have ever been in. I feel a great deal of support from people I don’t know, as well as my friends and family members. I have decided to not back down – I am innocent. The the people attacking my reputation have only one goal in mind – to have me step down,» said the governor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs during a press conference on Tuesday, 20 February.

Proportion of people working in Latvia’s culture sector is larger than the average in EU

The number of people working in Latvia’s culture sector is equal to 4.5% of the total number of employed people in the country. This proportion is also larger than the average one across the European Union, according to data published by Eurostat.

Ministry: idea for compulsory secondary education should be put on hold for now

Considering that Latvia’s Education and Science Ministry has several ongoing industry reforms, it would be best to put the proposal for compulsory secondary education on hold, said Education and Science Minister Kārlis Šadurskis during a meeting of Saeima’s Education, Culture and Science Committee.

Association: ECB should become more involved in resolving Latvia’s financial scandal

Association of Latvian Commercial Banks sees a need for the European Central Bank (ECB) to become more involved in the discussion and help resolve the situation, considering evaluation of ABLV Bank’s business model is in direct competence of ECB.

Hesburger to invest 11.5 million euros in Baltics this year

The largest fast food catering restaurant network in Finland and Baltic States – Hesburger – plans to invest approximately EUR 11.5 million in business development this year. EUR 5.5 million are planned to be invested in Latvia’s market, says Hesburger Development Director Ieva Salmela.

Air temperature drops below -30° C in certain parts of Northern Europe

On Tuesday, 20 February, air temperature in central and northern parts of Finland dropped to -27° C… -31° C in morning hours. In Norway, close to the Finnish border, air temperature has dropped as far as -34° C, according to data from meteorological stations.

FCMC suspects someone may want to undermine Latvia’s financial sector

It is not impossible that someone may want to undermine Latvia’s financial sector, said chairman of Latvian Finance and Capital Market Commission Pēters Putniņš in an interview to Rīta Panorāma programme on Tuesday, 20 February.

European exchange indexes decline; Wall Street enjoys a holiday

European exchange indexes declined on Monday, 19 February. No trading was performed at American stock markets, because the country was celebrating President’s Day.

Party: Latvian banking system’s crisis threatens Skanste neighbourhood's development

There are serious risks associated with European Union’s co-financed project for the revitalization of Skanste neighbourhood, including construction of Skanste tramway line, says member of Riga City Council and For Latvia’s Development party Viesturs Zeps.

Public opinion: KGB documents should be made publicly accessible immediately

Latvia’s society believes the KGB documents should be made publicly accessible immediately. In addition, residents say they are confident in their ability to discuss those documents without the country’s supervision, which takes the form of expert opinions prevailing over society’s moral views, as stated by guest researcher of History Institute of the University of Latvia M. His. Marta Starostina.

For Latvia’s Development: the prime minister is gone, but finance minister claims otherwise

«What we have observed in the past several days is that Latvia’s financial sector has received several heavy strikes as a result of the government’s uncoordinated and chaotic actions. Prime Minister Māris Kučinskis has evidently ‘disappeared’ and offers no clear plans to resolve the crisis, whereas Finance Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola says different things in every interview. Such behaviour will not help resolve the crisis. It could instead pull the country’s financial sector in a much deeper crisis,» says chairman of For Latvia’s Development Juris Pūce.

Bank of Latvia provided ABLV Bank with a loan of 97.5 mln euros in exchange for securities pledge

The Bank of Latvia has provided ABLV Bank with a loan worth EUR 97.5 million in exchange for securities pledge, as confirmed by the financial institution.

Prime Minister: Bank of Latvia governor is not allowed to take official post

As a security measure, the governor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs has been applied with a prohibition to take post, said Latvian Prime Minister Māris Kučinskis after a meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers.

Poland's halt to logging in ancient forest came after irreparable damage

Although Poland has stated logging in the old-growth Bialowieza forest has been stopped, Warsaw has failed to reveal the amount of trees already cut down.

«A good friend» pays 100,000 euro bail for arrested governor of the Bank of Latvia

Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (CPCB) has applied a bail of 100,000 euros for the arrested governor of the Bank of Latvia Ilmārs Rimšēvičs. The bail has already been paid to the State Treasury account, as confirmed by his lawyer Saulvedis Vārpiņš.

NP: ABLV blames Latvian officials for misleading foreign institutions

Last week, the reputation of Latvia’s second largest bank – ABLV – was seriously impacted. It is believed that money laundering was this bank’s main operation, and that it failed to comply with the prohibition on cooperation with North Korea. The bank is also accused of bribery. US Department of the Treasury Financial Crimes Enforcement Network rarely speaks so directly of any credit institution, says Nekā personīga programme.

Changes to third-country student residence in Estonia to add more responsibilities to university staff

The Estonian government has backed planned amendments are to the Aliens Law implementing an EU directive into Estonian law, which change how third-country nationals on enter and reside in Estonia if they are study or performing research work.

Russia criticises U.S. charges of Russian meddling in U.S. election

The Foreign Minister of Russia, Sergei Lavrov, has criticised the charges announced by the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation, against 13 Russian nationals and three companies for election meddling.

Government plans to form four riot prevention units in Latvian regions

The State Police plans to form four riot prevention units in Latvia’s regions, says Chief of State Police Ints Ķuzis.

Syrian Kurdish fighters under attack by Turkey announce deal with Syrian government forces

The mainly Kurdish militia in the north-west of Syria have announced having reached an agreement with the Syrian government for the latter to deploy its soldiers in order to help Kurds repel the current Turkish attack.

NCP: it is highly important to replace management of Bank of Latvia and FCMC

Considering recent events, which have not only impacted the country’s finance sector but also its international reputation, the New Conservative Party (NCP) demands immediate measures to be undertaken to replace the management of the Bank of Latvia and the Finance and Capital Market Commission. On top of that, it is also necessary to perform radical changes in the organization and supervision of those institutions, says NCP chairman Jānis Bordāns.

Air temperature in Latvia to gradually decline this week

On Monday, 19 February, atmospheric pressure will increase slightly in the north. With that, it is expected to snow only around Kurzeme’s south-west. Air temperature in most of Latvia will stay at -1° C… -6° C. In Kurzeme, however, air temperature will be around 0° C… +1° C, as reported by State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.