Once the results of the next elections are known, IbizaPreservation will launch an initiative aimed at getting the island of Ibiza to the goal of zero waste
Ibiza, 17-05-23 – On World Recycling Day, IbizaPreservation announced it will petition all winning representatives in the upcoming municipal elections to embark on a process that the foundation describes as “urgent” for the island to reach “zero waste” status.
Data from the Consell of Ibiza analysed by the IbizaPreservation Sustainability Observatory for its 2022 report, show that although recycling has improved compared to the previous year, it is still vital to reduce mass waste volumes (collected in the grey containers) as well as formulating strategies to reduce the overall generation of waste.
The data show that, in 2022, 31.94% of total household waste was collected was recycled. This places the island ever closer to the goal stipulated by the new 7/2022 Law of 8th April, on waste and contaminated soil for a circular economy, which establishes that by 2035, 50% of the total weight of municipal waste must be recycled.
However, another statistic provided by the Consell’s Environment Department from 7 November 2022, showed that, of waste collected in the grey containers, 48.45% was made up of organic matter, along with 8.44% recyclable packaging, 3.68% glass, 6.22% cardboard, 12.35% gardening waste, 7.59% textiles and 13.37% classified as other. This means that more than 86% of the material that arrives at Ca Na Putxa as general waste is in fact recyclable.
Meanwhile, the municipalities of San Juan and Santa Eulalia have still not yet implemented selective collection of organic matter, despite Balearic Waste Law stipulating the deadline for this as 11 May 2021. The coordinator of the Sustainability Observatory, Itziar Arratibel, emphasised that, “The impact of selective collection of organic matter on reducing the amount that ends up in landfill is significant, and therefore precious time has been wasted, considering the short life the landfill has left.”
In addition, although the data on the increase in the island’s recycling capacity is seen as positive, it must be highlighted that the volume of waste generated annually in Ibiza continues to increase. 15.6% more household waste was generated in 2022 than in the previous year and 15.3% more than in 2012, ten years ago.
The Director IbizaPreservation, Inma Saranova, explained that, given the prospect that the Ca Na Putxa landfill site will be at capacity within 7 years and the real possibility of this being replaced by a waste incineration model, “We must open a public debate on whether incineration is really the least bad solution to an apparently impossible dilemma, or rather if there are better alternatives than incineration, since this model does not help curb waste generation, competes with recycling and is a source of emissions.”
IbizaPreservation insists that there are alternatives beyond incineration focused on reducing waste. “The municipalities and islands that have already joined the Zero Waste Europe network are an example of how, with political will and minimal investment in waste collection, plus campaigns to incentivise proper recycling and waste reduction, a significant reduction can be attained, therefore avoiding the need to resort to incineration, or, at least, extending the life of the landfill site for as long as possible,” says Saranova.
With this objective, once the elections are over, the environmental foundation will address the elected representatives of the five municipalities of the island to discuss this network and success stories such as Sardinia, the Italian tourist island in the Mediterranean. Sardinia has gone from having a waste separation rate of 3.8% in 2003 to a strategy based on promoting selective collection with special emphasis on organic waste and a system of incentives, which have resulted in Sardinia already separating 56% of its waste in 2016 and reaching 80% in 2022.
According to Saranova, with the formal petition that will be presented to the administrations, “we seek not only to increase recycling rates on the island, but also the commitment, beyond electoral slogans, of all local authorities to work together to find ways to reduce the generation of waste at source and face the challenge this issue poses to the Ibiza, aspiring to become a zero waste destination.”