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Europe: 40% of municipal waste recycled or composted in 2008

    Archiv – Europe | In the 27 member states of the European Union (EU27), 524 kilogrammes (kg) of municipal waste was generated per person in 2008. 40% of this municipal waste was landfilled2, 20% incinerated, 23% recycled and 17% composted. The average amount of waste generated in the EU27 was virtually unchanged from 2007 (525 kg per person).Europe | In the 27 member states of the European Union (EU27), 524 kilogrammes (kg) of municipal waste was generated per person in 2008. 40% of this municipal waste was landfilled2, 20% incinerated, 23% recycled and 17% composted. The average amount of waste generated in the EU27 was virtually unchanged from 2007 (525 kg per person).
    This information is reveiled by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. Municipal waste generated per person varied from 306 kg in the Czech Republic to 802 kg in Denmark.
    The amount of municipal waste generated varies significantly across Member States, says Eurostat. This variation is mainly due to different consumption behaviour, and to a lesser extent to the inclusion, by certain Member States, of waste generated not only by households but also by small businesses and public institutions.
    More than 700 kg of municipal waste per person was generated in 2008 in Denmark, Ireland, Cyprus and Luxembourg. Malta, the Netherlands and Austria had values between 600 and 700 kg per person and Germany, Estonia, Spain, France, Italy, Finland, Sweden and the United Kingdom between 500 and 600 kg per person. The next group of Member States included Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece, Lithuania, Hungary, Portugal and Slovenia with values between 400 and 500 kg per person. The lowest values of below 400 kg per person were found in the Czech Republic, Latvia, Poland, Romania and Slovakia.
    Between 60% and 70% of municipal waste recycled or composted in Austria, Germany and the Netherlands. The treatment methods differ substantially between Member States. In 2008, the Member States with the highest share of municipal waste landfilled were Bulgaria (100% of waste treated), Romania (99%), Malta (97%), Lithuania (96%), and Latvia (93%).
    The highest shares of incinerated municipal waste were observed in Denmark (54% of waste treated), Sweden (49%), the Netherlands (39%), Belgium and Luxembourg (both 36%), Germany (35%) and France (32%). In ten Member States, incineration was equal to or below 1%.
    Recycling and composting of municipal waste was most common in Austria (70% of waste treated), Germany (65%), the Netherlands (60%) and Belgium (59%). In seven Member States less than 10% of waste was recycled or composted.
    The importance of these two treatment categories varies considerably between Member States. The Member States with the highest recycling rates for municipal waste were Germany (48% of waste treated), Belgium and Sweden (both 35%), Ireland and the Netherlands (both 32%) and Slovenia (31%). Composting of municipal waste was most common in Austria (40%), Italy (34%), the Netherlands (27%), Belgium (25%), Spain and Luxembourg (both 20%).

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