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Sound and independent information
on the environment

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Greening the entire economy; not just a handful of new sectors

We need to change the way we produce goods and services. We need to ‘green’ our economy. But this does not consist of developing just a number of selected sectors, such as renewables, eco-innovation, corresponding to 5 or even 10 percent of our economy. It requires greening the entire economy. The question is: ‘How do we create a performing economy that creates jobs and ensures our well-being, and yet respects the limits of our planet?’

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Europe’s objective: recycle more waste and send less to landfills

Europe produces large amounts of waste. How does Europe manage its waste? Is it a problem or a resource? We asked these questions to Almut Reichel who works on waste and sustainable consumption issues at the European Environment Agency.

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Food waste

Food waste

05 Jun 2012

Around one third of the food produced globally is lost or wasted. When more than one billion people around the world go to bed feeling hungry, it is impossible not to ask what can be done. But food waste is not only a missed opportunity to feed the hungry. It also represents a substantial loss of other resources such as land, water, energy - and labour.

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Waste in Greenland

Waste in Greenland

05 Jun 2012

From densely populated cities to remote settlements, everywhere we live, we generate waste. Food leftovers, electronic waste, batteries, paper, plastic bottles, clothing, old furniture - they all need to be disposed of. Some end up re-used or recycled; others are burned for energy or sent to landfills. There is not a single way to manage waste that would work everywhere. How we do it needs to take into account local circumstances. After all, waste starts as a local issue. Given its sparse population, long distances between settlements and lack of road infrastructure, here is how the Greenland government approaches the country’s waste issue.

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From mine to waste, and beyond

Almost everything we consume and produce has an impact on our environment. When faced with daily choices to buy certain goods or services, we often do not think about their ‘footprints’ on the environment. Their shelf prices hardly ever reflect their true costs. But there are many things we can do to green our consumption and production.

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Power to the people

Power to the people

15 Mar 2011

In modern societies, almost everything consumes energy. It is not only electronic gadgets, household appliances or street lighting that need it. Bringing water to our homes or food products to our supermarkets also require energy. Current consumption and production patterns demand a steady and often increasing energy supply.

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Not in my back yard — international shipments of waste and the environment

Waste without borders: Zhang Guofu, 35, makes EUR 700 a month, a huge wage in provincial China, sifting through waste that includes shopping bags from a British supermarket chain and English-language DVDs. The truth is that waste placed in a bin in London, can quite easily end up 5 000 miles away in a recycling factory in China's Pearl River delta.

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European Environment Agency (EEA)
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Denmark
Phone: +45 3336 7100