“Madeira has two essential objectives in the area of waste management: the first is to reduce urban waste production and the second is to increase selective gathering in order to increase recycling rates,” Susana Prada, the organisation’s secretary, explained.

The governess was speaking at a conference presenting the Urban Waste Action and Strategy Plan to the public enterprise ARM – Madeira Water and Waste, in Funchal.

“At the moment, all 11 municipalities of Madeira have followed the environmental goals,” she said, explaining that in the case of waste, a 23% recycling rate was reached when the goal was defined as 22% - and continental Portugal is still on 21%.

The ARM company is responsible for water and waste management throughout the entire autonomous region in the high season, and in just 5 municipalities – Câmara de Lobos, Machico, Santana, Ribeira Brava and Porto Santo – in the low season, with the rest – Funchal, Ponta do Sol, São Vicente, Ribeira Brava, Santa Cruz and Calheta – being responsible for their own service.

“The region, in its entirety, gathers 130 thousand tons of urban waste a year, but ARM, who manages the waste of five municipalities, is responsible for only 27% of the total gathered,” Susana Prada made clear, underlining the importance of involving the rest of the local governments in the process, especially since the laws in force and the region’s Waste Strategy stipulate the elaboration of municipal and cross-municipal waste management plans for the 2020-2030 period.