Industry body contributes to the changing landscape of waste management

28th June 2016

South Africa’s waste management industry is in a transformative state. With the country’s well-established waste management regulations, the Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa encourages organisations to comply with legislation.

During the past two years, South Africa’s waste management industry has witnessed updates to the National Waste Management Act. Proper and professional waste management practices are advocated, and the implementation of environmentally conscious waste management operations is required of all organisations dealing with waste, including municipalities.

The national industry body for waste management, the IWMSA, has a close working relationship with the South African government and fully supports and encourages compliance with waste legislation in the country. Prof. Suzan Oelofse, President of the IWMSA, says, “It all comes down to implementation. The waste landscape is changing; we are moving towards a ‘green’ industry that complies with waste legislation and regulations.”

On the IWMSA’s agenda for this year is the 23rd biennial waste management conference and exhibition, WasteCon 2016. The industry body’s flagship conference will delve into ‘The Changing Face of Waste Management’ from 17 to 21 October 2016 at Emperors Palace in Johannesburg. “Industry professionals will come together to discuss pertinent issues that South Africa and Africa as a whole are faced with in waste management,” explains Oelofse. Jonathan Shamrock, Chairman of WasteCon 2016, states, “South Africa’s waste management field is not without its challenges. Implementation on ground level is needed and all parties need to comply and abide by the ethics of the industry; all of which will be discussed at WasteCon 2016.”

The WasteCon 2016 keynote speaker address from Torben Kristiansen, Vice President - Waste and Contaminated Sites at COWI A/S based in Denmark, will shed light on European advances in waste management and its relevance for South Africa. “Kristiansen will discuss the current status of the waste management industry, legislation and practice in Europe as well as its governing policies. He will also focus on South Africa, the recent policy and legislative changes and problems faced on the ground level by local government in improving service delivery,” comments Shamrock.

The conference will have three main parallel sessions. These sessions will cover the streams of recycling, waste management and landfill/leachate. Delegates can look forward to an e-waste workshop as well as a workshop by the Department of Environmental Affairs. Other topics that will be addressed at the important forum include: Health Care Risk Waste, Integrated Waste Management Plans, Legislation and Waste-to-Energy.

Oelofse concludes by saying that conferences such as WasteCon 2016 are imperative in the waste management field: “We will see government and industry convene to discuss these pertinent issues affecting proper waste management. We encourage everyone operating in the industry to attend and to move towards a legal and ethically run industry.”
For information and to register, please visit

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