Parliament on Thursday passed legislation tweaking the Waste Law in such a way as to enable the activation on a nationwide basis of the ‘Pay-as-you-throw’ system designed to promote recycling.

The system will be implemented not straight away, but after a transitional period.

Pay-as-you-throw is a key element of the ‘European Green Deal’, a set of policy initiatives by the European Commission with the overarching aim of making Europe ‘climate neutral’ by 2050.

The system holds people accountable for the waste they produce by acting as an immediate incentive to correctly manage it in order to minimise their charges.

The bill passed on Thursday introduces the term ‘municipal waste’, and it defines the responsibility of municipal authorities in managing waste. It also lays out the penalties for offences.

During the debate stage preceding the vote, Greens leader Charalambos Theopemptou remarked that the amended law paves the way for recycling policies that ought to have been implemented as far back as 2004.

Disy MP Prodromos Alambritis said passage of the bill will allow Cyprus to tap the EU’s Cohesion Fund.

Pay-as-you-throw has already been implemented separately by Aglandjia municipality, which has reported a substantial reduction in waste volumes.