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EU Membership to bring changes to waste disposal in Slovakia

Slovak legislation on waste disposal is set to be changed due to the country's membership in the European Union, the Environment Ministry announced on April 21.

Slovak legislation on waste disposal is set to be changed due to the country's membership in the European Union, the Environment Ministry announced on April 21.

The new legislation will require towns and villages to separate five types of communal waste (paper, plastics, glass, metal and biologically degradable material) by 2010, the TASR newswire wrote.

The aim of separation is to reduce the amount of waste sent to dumps, and to lower collection charges for the transport and disposal of waste, said Environment Minister Jaroslav Izák.

The amount of waste produced per citizen is steadily increasing. The average Slovak produces 301 kilogrammes of waste per year, and the ministry is planning to launch information campaigns aimed at explaining the need for waste separation.

As of January 2009, Slovak landfill sites will have to comply with European norms. A process of evaluation is currently in progress, and it is expected that some small, mainly local dumps will be discontinued by the end of this year. Measures aimed at uncovering illegal waste imports will also be tightened, said Izák.

But Friends of the Earth, an environmental NGO, is unhappy with the new proposals. Activists warn that it will lead to a growth in illegal tipping and even a deterioration in separated waste collection and recycling. The organisation has already submitted 30 proposals relating to the new bill. TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports

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