By Chris Elliott…
We recently published an article about Minister of Tourism and Environment Ünal Üstel making a visit to the Gürdağ Integrated Waste Recycling, Recovery and Disposal Facility click here.
Following a further visit by Minister Dt Ünal Üstel to open the Gürdağ facility he wrote about this on his Facebook page and has kindly agreed for us to translate his message into English for a worldwide audience, about the major steps being taken to recycle waste in the TRNC.
Information shared by Minister Dt Ünal Üstel :
“The Hazardous Waste Disposal Facility, which is the first stage of the Gürdağ Integrated Waste Recycling, Recovery and Disposal Facility, was opened with a ceremony held on Monday 19th August 2019.
In the facility, which can be monitored on-line by the relevant departments of the state and non-governmental organizations with accepted membership requirements, appropriate wastes will be recycled as raw materials and the harmful waste which could harm human and other living beings will be disposed of.
Tourism and Environment Minister Ünal Üstel, Economy and Energy Minister Hasan Taçoy, Environment Department Director Abdullah Aktolgalı, President of Chamber of Industry Candan Avunduk and business people attended the opening of the facility in Haspolat.
Ünal Üstel, Minister of Tourism and Environment, emphasized that as the Ministry of Tourism and Environment, protection of the environment and instilling environmental awareness to the new generation is among its priorities.
With the contributions of the Environmental Protection Department, many regulations that will benefit the environment have been put into operation, while some of the regulations come into force the Minister said the opening of the facility today is as a result of the incentives of the Ministry and the Environmental Protection Department.
Explaining that the button has been pressed for the commencement of this facility today with the technical support given to the investor, Üstel said that the new Gürdağ Integrated Waste Recycling and Recycling facility will be a step forward for the recycling and zero waste project.
Expansion and recycling of the appropriate wastes in the plant with the appropriate method of recycling can be made for solid, liquid and gaseous fuel and the plant will be a huge gain on behalf of the country, the Minister stressed. He also added that out-of-date drugs, pesticides and similar hazardous waste stored safely in the past years, can be processed directly in this facility without storage.
Explaining that the facility can be followed by the Environmental Protection Department via an on-line system, Üstel said that the wastes can be monitored and controlled by the personnel of the department, and that the gas emissions from the facility can be evaluated through the 24-hour online system.
Hazardous waste, as well as construction-excavation waste can also be recycled with this facility, he added.
Many years ago, a shipwreck in Kalecik occurred involving oil, which was stored in barrels, flowing into the sea, and we now have a very modern facility to deal with all of these wastes, Üstel said.
Director Mustafa Ümit Ersözlü of Gürdağ Trading & Industry Ltd. made a speech and said that they are proud to introduce a new and modern investment which is seen in many developed countries, but not previously in the TRNC.
Ersözlü stated that with the completion of the investment, a large volume of wastes will be processed and explained the importance of the “Hazardous Waste Disposal Facility” plan, with the first part of the integrated facility where waste recycling, recovery and disposal will be made.
Noting that this investment will be a milestone for the TRNC, Ersözlü said that the importance given to the next generations, human and living beings health and nature will be emphasized and the intention to leave a beautiful environment as an inheritance will be an important factor.
Mustafa Ersözlü, added :
‘If we ask our people, What should be the income source of this country, what should be produced, what should be done? 90% of people will say ‘construction, agriculture and light industry supporting them with the tourism and education sector’. But for the development and growth of these sectors, isn’t it necessary to clean the environment and eliminate waste? How much more artificial development can we continue with the excessive incentives and support we give to the sectors mentioned above for the continuity of the economy, stability and increase of national income? How can we improve the tourism and education sector with an unclean, dirty and unhealthy environment? What about our health? The money we spend on health? We already know that many diseases are caused by unhealthy environmental conditions. In the future the support and incentives to be given should be spent on environmental cleanliness of the resources to be transferred, and to take the necessary legal measures in the same way as other developed countries and to introduce methods to dispose of waste.’
Ersözlü emphasized the need for social responsibility for the environment and referred to the fact that waste and garbage should not be mixed and should be dealt with differently from each other.”