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Malta still way behind on EU waste recycling ranking

In 2012, 42% of treated municipal waste was recycled or composted in EU

Staff Reporter
25 March 2014, 12:13pm
Composting and recycling in Malta is still low compared to disposing of waste in landfils
Composting and recycling in Malta is still low compared to disposing of waste in landfils

In the EU28, 492 kg of municipal waste was generated per person in 2012, while 480 kg of municipal waste was treated per person.

This municipal waste was treated in different ways: 34% was landfilled, 24% incinerated, 27% recycled and 15% composted.

For the EU there has been a significant increase in the share of municipal waste recycled or composted, from 18% in 1995 to 42% in 2012.

The amount of municipal waste generated varies significantly across member states. Denmark, with 668 kg per person, had the highest amount of waste generated in 2012, followed by Cyprus, Luxembourg and Germany with lower amounts but above 600 kg per person and Malta, Ireland, Austria, the Netherlands, France, Italy, Finland and Greece with values between 500 and 600 kg.

The United Kingdom, Lithuania, Spain, Sweden, Bulgaria, Belgium, Portugal and Hungary had values between 400 and 500 kg, while values of below 400 kg per person were recorded in Croatia, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Poland, the Czech Republic, Latvia and Estonia.

The treatment methods differ substantially between member states. In 2012, recycling and composting of municipal waste together accounted for more than 50% of waste treated in Germany (65% of waste treated), Austria (62%) and Belgium (57%).

Recycling and composting was also the major part of waste treatment in the Netherlands (50%), Luxembourg (47%), the United Kingdom (46%), Ireland (45%) and France (39%). In Finland composting & recycling and incineration had equal shares (both 34%).

Recycling was most common in Germany (47% of waste treated), Slovenia (42%), Ireland (37%), Belgium (36%), Estonia (34%), Denmark and Sweden (both 32%), and composting in Austria (34%), the Netherlands (26%), Belgium (21%), Luxembourg (19%), Germany and the United Kingdom (both 18%).

The highest shares of municipal waste landfilled were recorded in Romania (99% of waste treated), Malta (87%), Croatia (85%), Latvia (84%) and Greece (82%), and of incinerated municipal waste in Denmark and Sweden (both 52%), the Netherlands (49%), Belgium (42%), Luxembourg (36%), Germany and Austria (both 35%), Finland (34%) and France (33%).

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