Environment Minister Edwin Poots has applauded the essential waste sector for maintaining key services, protecting the environment and public health during the pandemic.
He also praised the public for continuing to recycle at high rates over recent weeks.
“I am so impressed at how the wider waste sector has responded to the many challenges presented to them during the pandemic and the logistical hurdles they have overcome. Waste collection, processing and recycling are all vital services which also help protect jobs and support the economy going during this important time,” Minister Poots said.
“Thanks to greater co-operation and communication between the wider waste industry, local government and my department, the sector has ensured the maintenance of essential services whilst protecting human health. And we have never been more grateful for the sheer hard work of the on-the-ground staff who are out there every day doing their best to keep our streets clean and our environment protected. Your efforts and resolve have not gone unnoticed,” he added.
The Minister also welcomed some good news that recyclable material collected from households, which is vital for our product supply chain, has increased over recent weeks and thanked the collaborative and co-ordinated approach taken by the sector during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Joseph Doherty Managing Director of ReGen thanked Minister Poots for working hand in hand with the industry. “DAERA has shown the industry unwavering support at this time of crisis, strengthening our relationship which can only lead to greater industry and environmental opportunities into the future.”
Eric Randall, Director of Bryson Recycling said: “We have worked closely with DAERA and the industry to ensure that much needed recyclable materials continue to be collected with an additional 30% of recyclables lifted during this period.”
Minister Poots said that moving through the pandemic and into recovery he believed the environment, industry, society and the economy would benefit from the constructive relationships and cohesive ways of working developed at this time.