(2012), "European Environment Agency (EEA) report – "waste opportunities: past and future climate benefits from better municipal waste management in Europe"", Management of Environmental Quality, Vol. 23 No. 2. https://doi.org/10.1108/meq.2012.08323baa.014Download as .RIS
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
European Environment Agency (EEA) report – "waste opportunities: past and future climate benefits from better municipal waste management in Europe"
Article Type: Features From: Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, Volume 23, Issue 2.
There is significant potential to cut greenhouse gases (GHGs) from municipal solid waste management, according to this new report from the EEA. The report covers the EU-27 (excluding Cyprus), Norway and Switzerland. It estimates that these countries could make GHG savings of up to 78 million tonnes carbon dioxide equivalent by 2020, or 1.53 per cent of Europe's emissions in 2008. The report takes a “life-cycle approach” to calculating emissions from waste, considering all direct emissions from waste during processing and transport. It also accounts for emissions that are avoided in other parts of the economy – for example, accounting for the reduction of emissions when fossil fuels are displaced by energy recovered from waste. In this way, the method can show the potential impacts of various waste management strategies.
Recycling is particularly effective in reducing emissions; recycling materials from municipal waste avoids emissions that would have been generated in extracting and processing virgin raw materials and these avoided emissions are higher than the emissions caused by the recycling processes. Three different scenarios for 2020 illustrate that the potential for GHG savings largely depends on how countries implement EU waste policies, in particular whether they meet the EU Landfill Directive targets to reduce landfill of biodegradable municipal waste. Projects such as the Interreg IVB (Baltic Sea) project RECO Baltic 21 Tech, whose details can be seen at: http://recobaltic21.net/try to foster technologically-based approaches towards waste management and, to some extent, help to contribute to the reduction of the emissions associated with it.
The EEA report is available at: www.eea.europa.eu/publications/waste-opportunities-84-past-and