Plastic Reduction using Waste Transfer and Recycling Centre

The establishment of waste transfer and recycling centres has helped to test various business models of recycling as well as formulate a Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Action (NAMA) framework to promote sector -wide transformation towards recycling and sustainable waste management.

Keywords: "Recycling" " Local waste collection stations" " Innovative financing"


In October 2017, three (3) months after operations commenced, the facility had achieved a processing capacity of 10-12 tons of recyclable plastics (HDPE and LDPE), as well as cardboard, paper and aluminium cans. This was achieved by incorporating micro enterprises, waste pickers and other players in the recycling industry to test different business models to ensure that recycling and sustainable waste treatment are economically viable. With respect to the formulation of the Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Action (NAMA) framework, a climate finance proposal was developed in close relation with Ministry of Environment (MITADER) and other relevant partners.

The project was implemented through a partnership between NIRAS A/S from Denmark and 3R Limitada, a Mozambican waste management company which was set up as a joint venture between Mozambican Association for Recycling and Carbon Africa Limited. The project was executed between 2015 and 2017, when the facility became operational.

To commence the project, a new regulation on Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) was formulated by the Council of Ministers with the Project team working closely with Ministry of Environment (MITADER) and other relevant partners. The major focus of the EPR regulation is the introduction of an environmental tax to strengthen a national fund which will encourage investments in sustainable waste treatment infrastructure. Following this, a survey was conducted to determine waste quantities and types in two municipalities, after which a daily record of collected and recycled waste streams was kept.

In addition, part of the project involved the set-up of national reporting standards to adequately follow the development, the so-called Measurement, Reporting and Verification (MRV) and input to Biennial Update Report (BUR) and Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC). These were developed by a Master thesis student and included recommendations for a revised MRV system for plastic recycling in the light of the 2016 Paris Agreement on climate changes.

The project also involved formulating a concept for a financial mechanism (e.g. a fund) for financing private sector driven sustainable waste management and recycling activities. This climate finance mechanism focused on the introduction of an Advanced Recycling Fee which would serve as subsidies and subordinated loans to provide additional support to sustainable waste treatment facilities. For the project to attract support for international funding, the project has been presented at several climate Conference of Parties events.

The next stages involved the construction of structures and buildings for a Waste Transfer and Recycling Centre. This phase was contracted to renowned engineering and construction firms through competitive tenders. On completion of construction works, equipment and necessary machinery for the Waste Transfer and Recycling Centre were purchased. Some of the equipment purchased includes a plastic shredder, a can baler, a skid loader and weighing equipment. The centre is currently processing cardboard, paper and aluminium cans. To meet with the objective of being fully compliant with national laws and regulations, all necessary permits and licences for the construction and operation of the Waste Transfer and Recycling Centre were secured.

In a bid to upscale and replicate the project in other municipalities on completion of the Nordic Climate Finance, talks were held with potential implementation partners and co-developers hence partnership agreements with Topack Mocambique- Industria de Plasicos S.A.R.L was signed. A memorandum of Understanding was also signed with Municipalities of Maputo and Matola.

At the end of the project, the Waste Transfer and Recycling Facility witnessed the processing and sales of two hundred and fifty (250) tons of municipal waste per month.

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