The municipality of Čačak adopted the LEAP (Local Ecological Action Plan) document in 2005. It classified numerous problems in the environment, defined goals to be met within certain deadlines, and recommended mechanisms and activities to be used in attaining the planned goals.
The process of analyzing the problems showed that the problem of waste is one of the most significant in the protection of the environment within the territory of the municipality of Čačak. Also, by way of different surveys it has been confirmed that the citizens have a high level of conscience about this problem. Questioned which is the most problem of the environment, most (30.8%) answered – waste. Questioned what ecological problem would they tackle first if they were in the position to decide, 50.3% decided for waste.
Quantities and morphological composition of waste in the territory of Čačak
The city and the suburbs generate 70 tons of communal solid waste per day. Rural areas of the municipality generate another 10 tons per days, making a total of 80 tons per day. This translates to 29,000 tons annually.
According to two year studies made in 40 characteristic households, a maximum of 20% is recyclable matter, about 60% are materials suitable for microbiological treatment, and 20% are irrecyclable materials. There is thus a theoretical possibility that ten quantity of waste currently taken to dumps can be reduced by 20%. Also, the quantity of secondary raw material is theoretically 5.800 tons annually at the level of the municipality, which underlines the clear need for recycling.
Strategic principles of the municipality of Čačak in the area of communal solid waste management
Territorial principle: Established system of gathering and driving away waste in the whole territory of the municipality.
Principle of reducing the quantity of waste: This means recycling, composting, and sanitary deposing of leftovers.
Regional principle: This means the deposing of leftover waste at a regional sanitary depot with a catchment area of 300,000 citizens.
Participation principle: This means such an organization of the overall work in which the following participate: industry as a generator and processor of waste, citizens as emitters of waste and participant in the sorting and composting, and the local government in accordance with appropriate authorization, legal obligations, the chosen development policy, and available resources.
Development principle: The concept is such that it can be easily modified, improved and harmonized with domestic and international regulations, as well as new technological solutions.
- Two controlled waste dumps, and assembly decision on shutting them down when the Regional Sanitary Depot at Duboko Užice becomes operational
- Centre for waste sorting in development
- Pilot city compost facility
- Home composters
- Fleet of trucks for transport of waste to local dumps
- Adequate number of containers to collect mixed waste for the entire territory of the municipality
- Four thousand sets of vessel of 160 L (8000 bins) for collecting sorted waste in individual households
Description of current state in the development of municipal solid waste management
- Two public utility companies gather and deposit waste, one of which also does selection
- One public utility company engaged in composting
- Environmental protection service
- Development service
- Pedagogical establishment with 16 kinder gardens
- Two elementary and four secondary schools
- Eco – Camp
- Three NGOs
- At least 40 volunteers
Waste collection: the municipality of Čačak has organized the collection of solid municipal waste through public utility companies. The waste is collected in the city and the suburbs, and in 80% of rural areas.
Sorting of municipal solid waste: in the municipality of Čačak the primary sorting of packaging waste is in the development stage, and sorting currently covers individual households in 20% of the municipal territory. The municipal waste of industrial and commercial entities is for the time being driven away as mixed waste, without prior sorting. The concept of waste sorting in Čačak is based on primary sorting at the source, in households, industry, and businesses, and on final sorting at the Final Waste Sorting Centre.
- Primarily, waste is separated into recyclable and irrecyclable components (the principle of two vessels – blue for storing recyclable and green for storing irrecyclable waste). Citizens are responsible for this operation.
- Finally, waste from blue vessels is collected and transported to the Final Waste Sorting Centre. It is sorted by the nature of the materials and the recycling technology (plastic, glass, paper and cardboard, metal, styrofoam, rubber, multilayered packaging – tetra-pack, and irrecyclable components) which are separated and stored. Thus sorted, these secondary raw materials are bundled and commercialized. The responsibility over this operation rests with the "Komunalac" public utility company of Čačak, and the City Mayor, by way of a team of experts formed following a decision of the Mayor, with the task of coordinating all activities linked to waste management.
Composting of irrecyclable components: as of this moment, a composting facility has been built in Čačak with a capacity of 500 tons of compost annually. A pilot project of composting is currently under way – the first of its kind in Serbia.
Storage: The irrecyclable component of waste and uncomposted leftovers are stored. The municipality of Čačak is, together with the municipality of Užice, a leading partner in the realization of construction of one of the first regional sanitary depots in Serbia, covering nine municipalities and cities of the Moravica and Zlatibor districts. The value of the project is 12,600,000 Euros, and the catchment area includes a population of 385,000 inhabitants. The municipality of Čačak is participating with 27% of costs. The capital investment project is under way, all financial funding has been secured, and it is expected that the depot will be operational by the end of 2008. Until then, the communal solid waste from the municipality of Čačak is being stored at two controlled waste dumps, and at over 50 unregulated dumps.
Education: the municipality of Čačak conducts continuous education of citizens in the area of waste management, particularly underscoring the importance of the participation of all citizens.
- Education of preschool children through the gathering of PET bottles in preschool establishments, and certifying teachers for ECO education
- Education of children in final elementary school grades and middle school, through seminars, round tables, and workshops within the newly established ECO camp
- Involving school children in the process of educating adults
- Instruction of citizens by way of leaflets, and through public information media
- Running of an international Art Colony once a year with the theme ''Creating with Secondary Raw Materials''. The colony is held in Čačak, at the premises of the Final Waste Sorting Centre.