07 • 12 • 2020

The Volume of Hazardous Waste has Increased in Latvia's State Forests

riepas vidusdaugava

Although nature walkers are becoming more responsible and waste brought to the forest is taken away more often, household, construction and hazardous waste is still a big problem in the forest territories managed by JSC “Latvia’s State Forests” (LVM). More than 96 thousand euros have already been spent on the removal of waste this year. The volume of waste in the forest continues to grow and the costs of its removal are also rising accordingly.

Summarizing the data on the amount of waste in state forests, the previously observed regularity is confirmed: the largest number of car tyres appears in forests during the autumn months. Since tyres do not decompose in nature and emit harmful chemical compounds during combustion, they are classified as hazardous waste.

“Tyres are not the only hazardous waste that company employees encounter on a daily basis. For example, a slate pile and a load of truck tyres were found in a forest of LVM Vidusdaugava Region, in LVM North Latgale – a barrel with residues of chemicals of unknown origin, whereas in LVM Zemgale region someone had dumped a large number of car tyres on a forest road,” says Edmunds Linde, LVM Forestry Planning Manager.

The amount of funds spent by LVM on waste collection increased by 32% in 2019. Given the growing volume of bulky and difficult-to-recycle waste found in the forest, these costs are expected to increase in 2020 as well.

LVM reminds that it is illegal to dump waste in forest. A person performing such an action is held administratively liable, as well as they must compensate LVM for the losses caused by waste collection. If you notice a place in a forest with a pile of waste, please inform the State Environmental Service using the mobile application “Vides SOS”.

LVM develops, improves and maintains sites of public importance in different places in Latvia: sightseeing facilities, recreation areas, trails, observation towers and parks, offering various recreation opportunities to Latvian residents and guests free of charge. Encouraging people to spend their free time in nature, over a period of 20 years LVM has established and maintains more than 360 freely accessible recreation places throughout the territory of Latvia.