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No 'one size fits all' solution for European municipal waste management

Waste management strategies must be customised to individual national conditions if they are to prove effective, according to a new EEA brochure released today. The brochure, 'The road from landfilling to recycling: common destination, different routes' is accompanied by a set of online national factsheets on waste management covering the EU-25.
Landfill

Landfill

Bans and taxes help divert waste

Waste management strategies must be customised to individual national conditions if they are to prove effective

Jane Feehan, Project Manager for Environmental Policy Analysis at the EEA

'Although the overall objectives of our waste legislation are determined at EU-level, the onus is on Member States, not the EU, to make the right strategic choices for an effective outcome', says Jane Feehan, Project Manager for Environmental Policy Analysis at the EEA.

Shedding light on this, the EEA and its Topic Centre have developed a set of country factsheets containing information about national waste management within the EU-25. The fact sheets provide insights about:

  • national legislative frameworks on waste
  • types of policy instruments being used
  • data on waste
  • policies for reducing waste generation and shifting waste management away from landfill

The factsheets show that three groupings of countries exist with similar systems and levels of recycling, incineration and landfill in Europe (see — below). Success criteria for diverting waste from landfill seem to be combinations of landfill bans, landfill taxes and separate collection schemes in those countries with high material recovery and incineration with energy recovery.

Three country groupings defined by waste diversion strategy

EU-level waste legislation is instrumental in determining the overall objectives, but country-level implementation determines the waste management strategy. To gain insights into whether a strategic shift in broader waste management has occurred, and why, the EEA is currently analysing the approaches and combinations of policy instruments that countries are taking in the management of their municipal waste, particularly in the context of the Landfill Directive.


Landfill Strategy Map


Download the brochure

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European Environment Agency (EEA)
Kongens Nytorv 6
1050 Copenhagen K
Denmark
Phone: +45 3336 7100