Memorandum of Understanding CONAI – Municipality of Cosenza 52.2% separate waste

18 November 2016



We are very satisfied with the results obtained since the launch of the new separate waste collection plan in the Municipality of Cosenza,” said Roberto De Santis, President of CONAI this morning in the reception room of the San Domenico complex (via Sertorio Quattromani), in Cosenza, during the presentation of the results of the memorandum of understanding signed by CONAI (National Packaging Consortium) and the Municipality of Cosenza, in relation to the launch of a new urban waste management system in the area. “ A year since its launch, thanks to the fruitful cooperation with the Municipality,” remarked De Santis, “it is fair to say that we have exceeded both our expectations: Cosenza is one of the best cities in the south. We are certain that this positive experience can be used as an example for other communities in Calabria, a region whose urban waste situation is critical. The ongoing project once again highlights CONAI’s commitment to supporting areas that are not meeting their separate waste collection targets. It is now time to consolidate and improve the results achieved at Cosenza: CONAI remains committed to this end”. Separate waste collection has reached 52.5% in Cosenza, well above the national and southern Italian average with Italian separate collection at 42.3% and southern Italy at 28.9%, according to ISPRA’s 2014 report. “Having reached about 60% (peak during the month of February), a historic result in separate waste collection,” added Mario Occhiuto, Mayor of Cosenza, “makes Cosenza a virtuous example for the whole of southern Italy. Thanks to the determination of the Municipality Administration and valuable support from CONAI, the southern capital can now compare itself to northern municipalities where good urban practices have been well established for a number of years. This means that the great challenges of civilisation can also be met in our region. The data collected, which we are presenting today, makes us proud as at the heart of separate waste collection is the objective to reduce pollution to the environment and the subsoil, improving the quality of life of citizens and contributing towards making the region sustainable. Only in this way will we continue to improve the current results and have the opportunity to leave a truly healthy environment to future generations. “1300 recycling municipalities were awarded by Legambiente for exceeding 65% separate waste collection destined for recycling in 2013,” remarked Stefano Ciafani, national Vice Presidente of Legambiente. “This was made possible through home collection promoted by local administrations as well as the daily commitment of urban sanitation companies and the 8 million citizens living in these cities. Through a modern waste cycle, this Italy fuels the recycling industry and fights the need for landfill. This solution will keep the shadow of emergency still lurking in some regions at bay, starting from Calabria. After being introduced to some smaller Calabria municipalities, we are happy that this revolution has now reached the capital Cosenza with the help of Conai. Despite some operational difficulties that will be overcome by optimising the service, we are on the right path. Only by replicating this model throughout the region, issuing fines, implementing prevention policies and building a large number of recycling plants, starting with plants for organic waste, can we put behind us the shame of our reliance on landfills and emergencies leaving waste piling up in the streets that have characterised the history of Calabria over the past twenty years”. According to Edo Ronchi, President of the Sustainable Development Foundation,the events in Cosenza are a miracle. I am here today,” explained Ronchi “ to find out exactly how this fantastic result was achieved in just one year, and in Calabria, where separate waste collection has historically lagged behind. The progress is also owed to CONAI, which provided concrete and targeted support to the city of Cosenza. This is proof that even the south can excel”. The memorandum of understanding between the Municipality of Cosenza and CONAI, with support from Ecologia Oggi, the company managing the collection service, was signed on the 3rd May 2013 and has resulted in a new door-to-door separate collection service being put in place. Prior to this date, separate waste was collected in bins in the road and performance was much lower than the minimum targets set by national and regional regulations. A range of different preliminary activities were put in place, concentrated primarily, particularly in the first phase, on training staff to collect and distribute Kits for domestic and non-domestic users. Particular attention was paid to communicating and providing information to users. Educational activities run in schools were of particular importance as students bring home the information they learn in school to their families. Separate waste collection was introduced gradually in the Municipality of Cosenza with the area being divided up into zones. The operational start-up phase got underway following the conclusion of training activities, on the 10th July 2013. Among all the zones where separate waste collection has been implemented, “Zona Franca” is worthy of a mention as a door-to-door collection system is being introduced. In order to optimise collection methods and reach and exceed the target of 65% as stipulated by the law (unified code on the environment, Legislative Decree 152/2006 and subsequent modifications), Zona Franca will apply the same collection model in place in the rest of the city with the addition of an experimental system that monitors citizens waste and awards them according to the number of correctly separated bin bags they provide.