The purpose of the Bill is to provide for increased penalties and a new scheme of graduated fixed payment notices for offences under the Air Pollution Act 1987.  The Bill also proposes that the non disclosure provisions of section 16 of the 1987 Act be made subject to the Freedom of Information Act.

The Bill also amends the Waste Management Acts 1996-2003, and aims to give greater flexibility in the setting of the levy on plastic bags and the landfill levy.  Furthermore, it introduces the power to charge a waste facility levy on incineration facilities. 

The Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, John Gormley said the bill would contribute to ending an over emphasis on residual waste management and help drive waste up the waste hierarchy towards recycling and reuse.

“This Bill once enacted, will contribute to ensuring waste is diverted from landfill, through higher landfill levies. It will also encourage the development of alternative technologies to make the most of what is a valuable resource”, concluded the Minister.