$120m for solutions to reduce emissions from organic waste

From today, we are re-opening the Waste Minimisation Fund (WMF), with more than $120 million over two years to support and accelerate solutions that will improve New Zealand’s ability to reduce emissions from organic waste.

In 2019, New Zealand’s waste was responsible for 4 per cent of total gross emissions. Of those emissions from waste, 94 per cent were from biogenic methane, which is created by the decomposition of organic waste. 

The latest funding round is targeting projects that minimise waste from food scraps, green waste, paper and wood. 

“The WMF is committed to accelerating New Zealand’s transition towards a low-emissions, low-waste circular economy,” said Ministry for the Environment’s Deputy Secretary for Waste & Resource Efficiency, Sam Buckle. 

The latest round is funded through the Climate Emergency Response Fund and the national waste disposal levy, Sam Buckle said. 

“We’re using these funding sources to shift the dial on minimising waste and reducing emissions – two of our most pressing issues.” 

The WMF is now open for funding requests for projects that meet fund criteria. 

In particular, investments will be targeted at: 

  • Kerbside collection assets, infrastructure and support for the roll-out of services for household food scraps and green waste   
  • Organic waste processing facilities    
  • Resource recovery infrastructure including construction and demolition facilities, and transfer station upgrades to enable resource recovery, particularly for organics. 

Between 2010 and 2021, the WMF invested over $132m across more than 280 projects. 

“This year the Ministry is being proactive in how the WMF operates and is adapting how we make the funds available,” Sam Buckle said. 

“For example, unlike previous funding rounds, funding applications will be open throughout the whole year instead of a set period. This change will allow businesses and organisations to engage more broadly with the fund and its aims.” 

Projects may include the purchase of equipment and services for a minimum of NZ$150,000, or NZ$50,000 for feasibility studies. 

For more information on eligibility and to schedule a conversation with the MFE team before submitting an application see the Waste Minimisation Fund webpage