The European Commission is contributing 8.9 million euros to support a clean energy transition in Cyprus. Brussels’ LIFE program aims to improve waste management infrastructure by increasing recycling and establishing a circular economy in order to reduce recyclable and biodegradable waste products ending up in landfills.
The plan is scheduled to last until September 2029 with a total cost of about €14.8 million. The amount doled out for Cyprus is part of a larger investment package worth €110 million that is dedicated to integrated projects for environmental and climate protection in 11 EU countries.
As outlined in an annex for the Commission’s press release, the project “Steering Waste Away from Landfill” is an initiative by the Department of Environment at Cyprus’ Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment to address the fact that Cyprus has one of the EU’s highest levels of municipal waste per inhabitant.
Most of this waste goes to landfills, with less than 20% recycled. Several factors hamper the country from meeting the EU’s Landfill Directive and Circular Economy Action Plans targets, including a lack of infrastructure and collection systems for recyclable and biodegradable waste.
“Measures will include the separate collection of biowaste in 50 rural, semirural and urban areas, and improving the collection of dry recyclables, like paper and metal cans, by setting up 20 green kiosks,” according to the details publicized.
“Seven cities will get reuse/repair centers and a network of reuse shops. Also, some ‘pay-as-you-throw’ systems will be demonstrated, which, together with introducing a landfill tax, should encourage the shift to a more circular economy,” the announcement added.
The beneficiaries of the project include the municipalities of Nicosia, Limassol, Paphos, Larnaca, Aglandjia, Aradippou, Paralimni, Ayia Napa, Poli Chrysochous and Yeroskipou, as well as several regional development agencies.
The goals of the program include the “implementation of concrete waste management actions that will support, enhance and maximize the application of the waste hierarchy and the separate collection of waste streams” and the “enhancement of the use of economic instruments in support of the circular economy and bioeconomy.”