Circular economy: European Parlement back plans to boost recycling and cut landfilling
Statistics for 2014 suggest that 44% of all municipal waste in the EU is recycled or composted. This compares to just 31% in 2004, and by 2020 EU member states should be recycling or composting over 50% of waste. In 2014, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden sent virtually no municipal waste to landfill, whereas Cyprus, Croatia, Greece, Latvia and Malta still landfill more than three quarters of their municipal waste. Although waste management in the EU has improved considerably in recent decades, almost a third of municipal waste is still landfilled and less than half is recycled or composted, with wide variations between member states. Improving waste management could deliver benefits for the environment, climate, human health and the economy. As part of a shift in EU policy towards a circular economy, the European Commission made four legislative proposals introducing new waste-management targets regarding reuse, recycling and landfilling. The proposals also strengthen EU provisions on waste prevention and extended producer responsibility, and streamline definitions, reporting obligations and calculation methods for targets.
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