Increasing amounts of litter are ending up in the world’s oceans and harming the health of ecosystems, killing animals when they become trapped or swallow the litter. Human health is also at risk, as plastics may break down into smaller pieces that may subsequently end up in our food. These are just a few of the problems emerging from the waste collecting in our seas.
The European Environment Agency (EEA) is launching a new competition for artistic depictions of waste in Europe. Each European generates approximately half a tonne of household waste on average. A lot of this so-called waste is actually a useful resource, but only two fifths is recycled, according to a recent analysis.
Austria, Germany and Belgium recycled the largest proportion of municipal waste in Europe in 2010. Although some countries have rapidly increased recycling rates, Europe is still wasting vast quantities of valuable resources by sending them to landfill, and many countries risk falling short of legally binding recycling targets.
The consumption and production of goods and services is currently unsustainable in Europe, with ‘decoupling’ of environmental pressures from economic growth insufficient to date. A new report from the European Environment Agency (EEA) describes methods for quantifying environmental pressures caused by European consumption patterns and economic production sectors. These methods can help target decoupling actions.
Waste is increasingly moving across EU borders, for recovery or disposal. This is true for waste shipments between EU countries, and also transfers of waste outside the EU, according to a new assessment from the European Environment Agency (EEA).
This week the Rio de Janeiro summit on sustainable development will open. Rio+20 is an opportunity to look back at changes in our environment since the first Earth Summit in 1992, and also a time to look to the future, re-evaluating the way our economies and our societies depend on the environment and natural resources.
Humanity’s growing appetite for bigger houses, overseas travel, food and consumer goods is the main cause of our most pressing environmental problems, according to a new report from the European Environment Agency (EEA) which considers the links between the environment and consumption.
Demand for materials is so intense that between 20 and 30 % of the resources we use in Europe are now imported. With the boom in international trade, EU consumption and production damage ecosystems and human health far beyond Europe’s borders, according to a report published by the European Environment Agency (EEA).
Recycling has multiple benefits for many areas of the economy – providing raw materials, creating jobs and encouraging business opportunities and innovation. These economic benefits of recycling are examined in a new report from the European Environment Agency (EEA). The report considers the recycling industry in the context of building a 'green economy', a major European policy objective.
Dealing with large quantities of unwanted (and sometimes toxic) waste is often difficult – but it becomes even more complicated when people live in isolated communities, in extreme environments hundreds of kilometres from the nearest treatment plant. This is the subject of a new film considering waste management in Greenland, entitled ‘Mission Greenland – for a cleaner future’.
There is a big potential to cut greenhouse gases (GHGs) from municipal solid waste management, according to a new report from the European Environment Agency (EEA). The report, 'Waste opportunities – Past and future climate benefits from better municipal waste management in Europe', covers the EU-27 (excluding Cyprus), Norway and Switzerland. It estimates that these countries could make GHG savings of up to 78 million tonnes carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-e) by 2020, or 1.53 % of Europe's emissions in 2008.
A series of maps on water quality, updated with the latest information reported by countries, has been published by the European Environment Agency (EEA). The maps display water quality parameters in various receiving waters across Europe, alongside information on urban wastewater treatment and receiving areas sensitive to eutrophication.
Reduce, reuse, recycle – the common mantra of waste management makes the process sound simple. But while these three ingredients may be the same, the recipe for sustainable waste management can be very different – and Greenland’s unique environment presents some considerable challenges.
Humans are consuming the world’s limited resources at increasingly rapid rate, and Europe is particularly reliant on imported goods to sustain its high levels of consumption. On World Environment Day, the European Environment Agency (EEA) draws attention to Europe’s resource use and offers tips to reduce it.
New online maps published today by the European Commission and the European Environment Agency, in close cooperation with the Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) of the Joint Research Centre, allow citizens to pinpoint the main diffuse sources of air pollution, such as transport and aviation. The new set of 32 maps shows where certain pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and particulate matter are released. It complements existing data on emissions from individual industrial plants from the European Pollutant Release and Transfer Register (E-PRTR). The Europe-wide register aims to help Europeans actively engage in decisions affecting the environment.
Some countries are frontrunners on waste recycling and prevention; others could be inspired by these experiences. The European Environment Agency (EEA) and its European Topic Centre on Sustainable Consumption and Production (ETC/SCP) have compiled a set of fact sheets presenting information on national strategies, targets and instruments for prevention and better management of waste.
The European Commission and the European Environment Agency today launched a comprehensive new European pollutant release and transfer register – E-PRTR. The register contains information about the quantity and location of pollutants released to air, water and land by industrial facilities throughout Europe. It includes annual data for 91 substances and covers more than 24 000 facilities in 65 economic activities. It also provides additional information, such as the amount and types of waste transferred from facilities to waste handlers both inside and outside each country.
The European Environment Agency (EEA) is teaming up with Roskilde Festival to give thousands of music fans visiting Denmark this week relevant, up-to-date information about Europe's environment.The Roskilde Festival is northern Europe's biggest music event, drawing 100 000 visitors from around the world and bringing together some of the world's leading rock, pop, soul, R&B, electronic and hip hop artists.
The EEA report 'Diverting waste from landfill' finds that the EU Landfill Directive has been a positive force in altering management of biodegradable municipal waste in the EU. The study explains how setting medium- and long-term targets for reducing landfilling has helped countries to define waste strategies and target investments.
A new EEA report 'Waste without borders in the EU' examines the increase in cross-border waste shipments and the drivers behind them. It also reveals that the number of reported illegal shipments of waste is increasing. But while the European Union can do better in tracking electronic waste as well as other hazardous and problematic "waste streams", almost all waste generated in the EU that needs to be disposed is in fact disposed within EU borders.
Is gardening one of your interests? If so and you live in central or northern Europe the 'killer slug' is probably one of your personal enemies. The slug, which attacks your herbs and vegetables relentlessly, seems immune to control measures.
'Europe's citizens represent only 7 % of Earth's total population, but consume 15 % of the world's energy, 15 % of the meat production and 24 % of the paper produced in the planet', said Professor Jacqueline McGlade, Executive Director of the European Environment Agency (EEA), speaking at the opening of Green Week in Brussels this afternoon.
A joint UNEP-EEA study of environmental issues in the countries of South-East Europe (SEE), Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, and Central Asia (EECCA) — now also available in Russian — shows that the region is facing many challenges in the wake of economic growth. The report identifies several opportunities to 'leapfrog' and avoid some of the environmental problems experienced in western Europe.
Housing, food and drink, and mobility have the greatest environmental impact over their lifecycle, the EEA and the European Commission have shown. This concern brought together European governments, researchers, NGOs and business under the same roof during a conference held in Ljubljana, Slovenia, back in September last year.
Improved waste management is already contributing to lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, according to a new EEA study launched today at the international conference on waste and climate change in London.
'Gross domestic product, regularly used as an indicator of the size of a country's economy, does not factor in the benefits from nor the costs to the ecosystem,' said EEA Executive Director Prof. Jacqueline McGlade in her presentation at the expert workshop preceding the 'Beyond GDP' conference in Brussels this week.
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.
Breaking the link between economic growth and its environmental impacts is one of the key challenges facing economies in South East Europe (SEE), Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia (EECCA), says a new report.
Many of the problems linked to Europe's growing waste volumes can be solved if countries learn from others that have pioneered solutions, argues a new report published today by the European Environment Agency.
National strategies to reduce the amount of biodegradable
municipal waste sent to landfill should comprise an integrated package of measures,
including separate collection, taxes and centralised composting, and ensure
that markets exist for compost and other end products.
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 ...
Did you know that most of oil pollution in our oceans is the result of human activity on land and not tanker spills? If you notice oil leaking from your car, fix it right away! Never dispose of used oil into a storm drain.
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