Changes Ahead: How Will Waste Levy Increases Impact Your Business?

25 June 2024

As New Zealand moves forward with phased increases in the waste disposal levy over the next three years, your business needs to prepare for significant changes in waste management practices.

On May 31, 2024, the New Zealand government greenlit the second phase of waste disposal levy rate increases, paving the way for incremental changes over the next three years.

This strategic move aims to refine waste management practices and enhance environmental sustainability across the country.

Understanding the Waste Levy

The waste disposal levy, introduced under the Waste Minimisation Act 2008, is a fee imposed on waste sent to landfill. The primary goal of the levy is to provide a financial incentive to reduce the amount of waste being disposed of in landfills and to promote recycling and resource recovery efforts. 

Revenue from the levy is used to support waste minimisation initiatives, including projects and programmes that improve recycling, composting, and waste reduction.

What You Need to Know

Total Utilities’ Sustainable Process Improvement Manager Pravind Singh explains, “The waste disposal levy is being expanded to cover a wider array of landfill types and waste categories. This includes significant adjustments to levy rates, encouraging businesses and households alike to reconsider their waste management strategies.”

Future Rates for the Waste Disposal Levy (per tonne)

Facility Class Waste Types Current 1 July 2024 1 July 2025 1 July 2026 1 July 2027
Municipal landfill (Class 1) Mixed municipal wastes from residential, commercial, and industrial sources $50 $60 $65 $70 $75
Construction and demolition fill (Class 2) Accepts solid waste from construction and demolition activities, including rubble, plasterboard, timber, and other materials $20 $30 $35 $40 $45
Managed or controlled fill facility (Class 3 and 4) Contaminated but non-hazardous soils and other inert materials (e.g., rubble) $10 $10 $15 $15 $20

Source: Ministry for the Environment, April 2021. All amounts expressed in dollars per tonne.

Impact on Businesses

“Businesses must prepare for increased operational costs associated with waste disposal as these levy rates escalate,” advises Pravind. 

“Proactive planning and strategic adjustments will be essential to mitigate financial impacts and uphold compliance with evolving regulatory standards.”

Total Utilities: Your Strategic Partner

Total Utilities offers expert guidance and customised solutions to help businesses navigate these regulatory changes effectively. Whether you need assistance in waste audit and management or insights into optimising recycling practices, our team is here to support your sustainability goals.

Contact Us

For personalised advice on preparing for the waste disposal levy changes or to explore our comprehensive waste management services, contact Total Utilities today.