The city of Krk (Croatia) and six other municipalities on the same island are the latest group of municipalities to become Zero Waste Candidate Cities. The announcement was confirmed following the waste management analysis and agreement of the island’s zero waste plan by Zelena akcija, the Croatian member of the Zero Waste Europe network.
Krk, Omišalj, Vrbnik, Baška, Dobrinj, Punat, Malinska–Dubašnica are among Croatia’s top performers in sustainable waste management and separate collection, despite the challenges that seasonal tourism brings to the local area and community. All seven municipalities have their waste management services provided by the company Ponikve eko otok Krk d.o.o., who signed on July 5 2021 the “Decision on the Accession to the International ‘Zero Waste’ Strategy” document on behalf of the local self-government units. The document promotes the fulfilment of ambitious objectives for waste reduction, as well as the reuse, recycling and composting of waste with the application of numerous effective measures that are compatible with environmental protection.
Marko Košak, Zero Waste Croatia Coordinator, said
“This is a big step forward to the first ‘Zero Waste’ island in Croatia. We are very happy that municipalities on Krk, led by waste management company Ponikve, showed great will to adopt the Zero Waste strategy and become ‘Zero Waste Candidates’. By implementing our recommendations and meeting the defined objectives, municipalities on Krk will become even more recognisable as part of the best European waste management practices and will qualify for a full Zero Waste certification process.”
In order to meet those objectives and in compliance with the Waste Management Plans, the local self-government authorities also commit to undertake the following activities in the next 5 years:
- Create an analysis of the composition of mixed municipal waste to define the following steps to reduce its amount.
- Introduce a volume-based fee system to additionally encourage citizen behaviour and reduce the volume of mixed municipal waste.
- Stimulate the reduction of waste generation and the increase of reuse by opening reuse centres and other incentives, such as the reduction of single-use plastics in public institutions, encouraging the purchase of vending machines for selling products without packaging, etc.
- Establish an expert council for waste management (Waste Management Council), which shall discuss the activities that may contribute to the additional reduction in volumes of mixed municipal waste. Include the representatives of the utility company and of Zelena akcija as well as the local community.
- Create an impact study on the effects of tourism on the waste management system in order to determine the correlations in data on volumes of waste from tourism.
- Promote home composting by distributing composters and through quality education.
- The outcomes will be evaluated by Zelena akcija in cooperation with Ponikve and submitted to the Mission Zero Academy’s auditors who will prove Krk’s transition towards zero waste and its continuous improvements in its journey to become a fully Zero Waste Certified City.
Ivica Plišić, Ponikve eko otok Krk, Director said:
“The island of Krk has been a top performer in separate waste collection and sustainable waste management in Croatia for years, despite facing considerable challenges posed by significant tourism seasonality. Becoming a ‘Zero Waste Candidate’ is the next logical step. We are fully committed to achieving Zero Waste goals because this brings benefits both for the environment and our citizens.”
This Candidate City commitment represents a significant momentum for the island of Krk, becoming a role model to the local communities in Croatia and beyond which strive towards waste reduction and sustainable waste management.
Want to know more? Find out how to become a Zero Waste Candidate City here.