There is no waste in nature; only cycles of resource use. The Green Party wants our communities and economy to run on the same no-waste principle. Overuse of fossil fuel- based plastic is contributing to climate change and plastic pollution. The volume of rubbish going to landfill increasing by 49% in the last decade. Our food production systems also send huge amounts of waste to landfill, where it emits greenhouse gases.

The Green Party supports products that reduce waste at every step of the production chain. Protecting Papatūānuku, and creating jobs in the process, requires effective regulation, incentives, and innovation.

This term, the Green Party has done more to address waste than any other previous government. We have banned single use plastic bags, phased out micro-beads in cosmetics,

and expanded the waste levy on landfills. We’re designing a container return scheme for beverage containers and have implemented mandatory product stewardship schemes, as well as improving Aotearoa’s kerbside recycling system.

We will continue to invest in waste reduction and community initiatives, encouraging the recovery, reuse, redistribution, recycling, and reallocation of materials. Through careful planning and a clear vision, we will create a sustainable and circular economy.

The Green Party will:

  • Fix kerbside plastic recycling to be more consistent throughout Aotearoa, and develop local recycling capability to process more recyclable materials on- shore.

  • Phase out low-grade plastic products that can be easily replaced with reusable alternatives, especially plastic water bottles, cotton buds, and fruit stickers.

  • Commit to zero food waste and zero e-waste in our landfills, and pass legislation creating clear waste management obligations for businesses and local authorities.

  • Develop a new Waste Strategy and review the Waste Minimisation Act and Litter Act to ensure we have the tools needed to put Aotearoa on a zero waste pathway.

  • Amend the Consumer  Guarantees  Act to introduce a Right to Repair, requiring manufacturers to design products that can be fixed, not thrown away.

  • Improve clear labelling with common standards to ensure people can have confidence in products marked “compostable” and “recyclable”.

  • Continue to create more sector-wide product stewardship schemes for problem products like electronics, and implement a container return scheme for beverage containers.

  • Reward innovation by increasing funding available through the Waste Minimisation Fund, creating a materials recovery, re-use, and repurposing sector that supports good jobs in Aotearoa.


Read more about our green vision for Aotearoa