Europe triples recycling but still lags target

Recyclable items pictured in Paris on March 18, 2013
Recycling of household waste has tripled in Europe over the past decade but some countries are dragging their feet for meeting a target set for 2020, the European Environment Agency (EAA) says.

Recycling of household waste has tripled in Europe over the past decade but some countries are dragging their feet for meeting a target set for 2020, the European Environment Agency (EAA) said in a report issued on Tuesday.

From 2001 to 2010, recycling of materials and composting of in the 27 nations of the (EU) rose from 13 percent of the total to 39 percent.

The bloc has set a target of 50 percent for 2020.

Leading the pack are Austria (63 percent), Germany (62 percent), Belgium (58 percent) and the Netherlands (51 percent).

In contrast, Romania recycled only 1 percent of its waste in 2010, down from 2 percent in 2001, and the figure for Bulgaria in 2010 was zero, unchanged from 2001.

"In a relatively short time, some countries have successfully encouraged a culture of recycling, with infrastructure, incentives and public awareness campaigns," said EEA Executive Director Jacqueline McGlade.

"But others are still lagging behind, wasting huge volumes of resources. The current intense demand for some materials should alert countries to the clear in recycling."


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Citation: Europe triples recycling but still lags target (2013, March 19) retrieved 16 September 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-03-europe-triples-recycling-lags.html
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Mar 19, 2013
Good to see we're in the top4, but it's not hard to imagine the developing countries in the EU are more keen to focus on economic growth.

Who would care about separating plastics if there's hardly any bread on the table?

I guess this is one of the challenges of the EU, raise the bar but still find consensus with the countries that are lagging behind.

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