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City of Vienna cooperates with Altstoff Recycling Austria to reduce waste

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March 20, 2008

Cooperation between Austrian government and industry assures clean environment

The existing cooperation between the Austrian government and companies in environmental protection works. An incentive program for small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) by the City of Vienna and ARA serves as a good example.  

Altstoff Recycling Austria (ARA) is a non-profit organization founded in 1993 through an initiative of Austrian trade and industry. Together with eight affiliated recycling companies, it organizes the collection and recovery of waste packaging materials all over Austria 

How it works
The Austrian Packaging Ordinance requires everyone who uses packaging material as part of its end product to the consumer (e.g. provider of a coffee vending machine using plastic cups) to take back and recycle these materials. The easiest way for Austrian companies to comply with this regulation is to sign a contract (license agreement) with ARA. Take for example the aforementioned vending machine: The licensee/provider of the vending machine pays a license fee to ARA before selling his coffee to the consumers. This fee of course is passed on to the consumer, who disposes of the cup by tossing it into one of the ARA containers placed at practically every corner in Austria. ARA collects, sorts and recycles the waste; recyclables are then recycled. More than 15,000 companies – including more than 1,000 partners from neighboring countries – use the services provided by ARA. Also, this system has helped to keep waste costs per resident in Austria very low compared to other countries.

Currently the City of Vienna, together with ARA and the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber offers incentives to SME for waste prevention. This can be up to 30% (maximum of EUR 30,000) of a company’s waste costs. The award, which is already being offered the 4th year in a row, places importance on developing innovative methods for waste reduction and prevention. Find more information on the program here

The Austrian Trade Commission in Chicago is the official contact for Austrian companies in the environmental industry interested in doing business with the U.S. It organizes events for Austrian companies to present their products and services in the U.S.

If you would like to learn more about environmental technology from Austria, please feel free to contact us at / T: (312) 6445556 or meet Austrian environmental companies at our upcoming events.