Solid Waste Management Policy 2016-2026

The policy guides the way forward for the Cook Islands to achieve better management of solid waste in line with the National Sustainable Development Plan (NSDP).

Solid Waste Management Policy 2016-2026

The Solid Waste Policy provides a high-level framework for solid waste management in the Cook Islands. The vision for this policy is 'an informed and proactive community taking responsibility for sustainable solid waste management, aspiring towards Zero Waste Cook Islands'. In developing this policy, a sound foundation was provided by the policy elements contained within the Cook Islands National Solid Waste Management Strategy 2013-2016. Implementation of this policy will require some legislative amendments.

The purpose of this policy is to improve the Cook Islands management of solid waste and promote shared responsibility for waste management by all stakeholders. The policy contains objectives and policies which addresses waste minimisation, the institutional and legislative framework, appropriate infrastructure, sustainable financing, education and awareness, and monitoring and evaluation.

There is an existing Cook Islands National Solid Waste Management Strategy 2013-2016 which was developed by the National Solid Waste Management Committee. It contains a mix of policy elements and more specific strategies. Those policy elements have formed the foundation for this document.



The policy is consistent with national policies as set out in the NSDP 2016-2020.

Solid Waste Management Policy 2016-2026

The NSDP sets sixteen national development goals. Goal 3 is of most direct relevance to this policy. It states as follows:

"3. Promote sustainable practices and effectively manage solid and hazardous waste"

The NSDP has identified two indicators to measure progress towards this goal. Indicator 3.1 tracks total waste recycled. Indicator 3.2 tracks the percentage of hazardous waste that is accounted for and managed.

Other NSDP goals of particular relevance are:

"4. Sustainable management of water and sanitation"

"11. Promote sustainable land use, management of terrestrial ecosystems, and protect biodiversity”

“12. Sustainable management of the oceans, lagoons and marine resources"

These goals are of particular relevance because of the adverse effects that poor solid waste management can have on the natural environment.

The policy is available for download and we hope that you will enjoy reading it and participate in achieving its vision in your every day life.