SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – Ministers plan to change the rules which allow 20% of the soil and rubble used in building roads and dykes and in making lakes less deep to be made up of plastic, polystyrene and other non-natural materials.
At the moment, construction companies use soil and sludge which has been mixed with building waste to create a strong base for building. In total, some 40 million cubic metres of soil and sludge is used in the construction industry or in nature management every year.
Now ministers say this sludge may only ‘sporadically’ contain plastic – because eliminating it altogether is not feasible. ‘Plastics take hundreds of years to decay so this is not a problem which will solve itself,’ junior infrastructure minister Stientje van Veldhoven said.
‘But these rules will help to combat it.’ In addition, the minister has allocated €5m find out where the waste in the Netherlands rivers comes from and to work out ways to capture and recycle the plastic. (DutchNews)