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Waste Prevention

Examples of Waste Prevention

Measures that can affect the framework conditions related to the generation of waste

  • The use of planning measures, or other economic instruments promoting the efficient use of resources.
  • The promotion of research and development into the area of achieving cleaner and less wasteful products and technologies and the dissemination and use of the results of such research and development.
  • The development of effective and meaningful indicators of the environmental pressures associated with the generation of waste aimed at contributing to the prevention of waste generation at all levels, from product comparisons at Community level through action by local authorities to national measures.

Measures that can affect the design and production and distribution phase

  • The promotion of eco-design (the systematic integration of environmental aspects into product design with the aim to improve the environmental performance of the product throughout its whole life cycle).
  • The provision of information on waste prevention techniques with a view to facilitating the implementation of the best available techniques by industry.
  • Organise training of competent authorities in regards to the insertion of waste prevention requirements in permits under the Waste Framework Directive and Directive 96/61/EC.
  • The inclusion of measures to prevent waste production at installations not included in Directive 96/61/EC. Where appropriate, such measures could include waste prevention assessments or plans.
  • The use of awareness campaigns or the provision of financial, decision making or other support to businesses. Such measures are likely to be particularly effective where they are aimed at, and adapted to, small and medium sized enterprises and work through established business networks.
  • The use of voluntary agreements, consumer/producer panels or sectoral negotiations so that relevant businesses or industrial sectors are able to set their own waste prevention plans or objectives or correct wasteful products or packaging.
  • The promotion of credible environmental management systems, including EMAS and ISO 14001.

Measures that can affect the consumption and use phase

  • Economic instruments such as incentives for clean purchases or the institution of an obligatory payment by consumers for a given article or element of packaging that would otherwise be provided free of charge.
  • The use of awareness campaigns and information provision directed at the general public or a specific set of consumers.
  • The promotion of credible eco-labels.
  • Agreements with industry, such as the use of product panels, which is being carried out within the framework of Integrated Product Policies or with retailers on the availability of waste prevention information and products with a lower environmental impact.
  • In the context of public and corporate procurement, the integration of environmental and waste prevention criteria into calls for tenders and contracts that are in line with the Handbook on environmental public procurement published by the Commission on 29 October 2004.
  • The promotion of the reuse and/or repair of appropriate discarded products or of their components, notably through the use of educational, economic, logistic or other measures such as support to or establishment of accredited repair and reuse-centres and networks especially in densely populated regions.