Europe – Austria has been declared the European champion in terms of recovered paper collection and recycling. According to the European Commission’s latest Eurobarometer survey, no less than 99% of the country’s respondents claimed to regularly separate paper from other waste for recycling. EU citizens average a 90% commitment to paper recycling, although Romania offers a notable exception as only 50% of the country’s consumers taking part in the survey claimed to separate paper at source for the benefit of recycling.
According to EU environment commissioner Janez PotoÄnik, 80% of respondents wanted to see the volume of domestic waste reduced in the short term. Some 71% said they were prepared to separate more in order to realise this goal, while 59% of all respondents voiced their support for financial incentives to support recycling.
Publication of the survey findings follows the European Commission’s adoption of a wide-ranging list of legally-binding targets earlier this month, including: a 70% recycling and reuse target for municipal waste by 2030; an 80% recycling target for packaging such as glass, paper, metal and plastic by 2030; and a ban on the landfilling of all recyclable and biodegradable waste by 2025.
By implementing such measures, the Commission estimates that businesses across the EU will be able to cut costs by Euro 600 billion, or 8% of annual turnover.