As of 2015 Member States are obliged to separately collect paper, glass, metal and plastic with a view to foster high quality recycling of these materials. In a study on law and practise of separate collection 28 Capitals the Commission takes stock marking a starting point of intensified discussion with Member States on this crucial element of circular economy.
Study to improve hazardous waste management based on an assessment of Member States' performance (2015)
The study provides an overview of the state of hazardous waste management in the 28 EU Member States, summarised in "factsheets" (drafted for 10 Member States selected for in-depth assessment) or "screening documents" (drafted for 18 Member States).
In the first part of the study, the countries' performance on hazardous waste management was assessed on the basis of a methodology tailored for the purposes of this study.
In the second part of the study, the focus was on analysing and explaining a worrying finding of the study, which is that the gap between generated hazardous waste and treated hazardous waste in the EU was, based on 2012 data collected by Eurostat, 26 million tonnes, equivalent to about 26% of the total generated amount of hazardous waste. Therefore a detailed analysis of the hazardous waste management practices of 10 countries (Luxembourg, Ireland, Latvia, Italy, United Kingdom; Bulgaria, Germany, Estonia, Finland, the Netherlands – i.e. the five countries with the biggest gap as concerns generation and treatment and the five countries with the smallest gap) was undertaken.
An overall conclusion and improvement actions for HW management practices in all the Member States are presented.
Study to assess the impacts of different classification approaches for hazard property "H 14" on selected waste streams (2015)
The legislation governing waste classification was reviewed at the end of 2014 in order to adapt it to technical and scientific progress and to align, to the extent possible, to Regulation 1272/2008 on classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures.
One issue left out of the review of the legislation governing waste classification was the hazardous property H 14 (ecotoxicity) of Annex III of Directive 2008/98/EC. The Commission considered that further information was needed in order to propose a well-grounded and justified definition of criteria for H 14, and, if appropriate, align the Decision and the Directive with the CLP criteria.
A study was undertaken by Bio by Deloitte and Ineris on behalf of DG Environment to provide an assessment of the impacts of changing the criteria for the definition of ecotoxicity for waste.
Study to develop a guidance document on the definition and classification of waste (2015)
The legislation concerning waste classification has been recently reviewed. Those involved in the production, assessment, management and regulation of hazardous waste are in need of a comprehensive reference manual which provides technical guidance on the assessment and classification of hazardous waste.
The objective of this study was to assist the Commission in the development of such a guidance document, based on a thorough analysis of the legislative framework, the relevant literature and, if needed, field research, and contributions from experts (from competent authorities, testing laboratories, industry and waste management practitioners).
Study on Resource Efficient Use of Mixed Wastes (2015)
The aim of the study, launched in January 2015, is to assess the current CDW management situation in EU Member States, identifying obstacles to recycling and potential deficiencies that could lead to non-compliance with EU waste legislation. Good practices in terms of creating conditions for increasing CDW recycling and for improving the quality of recycling and recovery will be identified and a set of recommendations to address potential barriers will be formulated. In parallel, success stories of efficient CDW management will be showcased in 6 case studies, illustrating key elements for success, as well as the necessary preconditions. Finally, the credibility of official CDW statistics will be assessed, identifying the sources of inaccuracy and proposing measures for improvement. The outcome of the study will be discussed at a seminar in May 2016 in Brussels. The study shall be finished in August 2016.
Development of guidance on Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) (2012)
The study started in December 2012 and had a duration of 15 months.
The aims of the study are to:
Describe, compare and analyse different types of EPR systems in the EU.
Identify necessary conditions and best practices for the functioning of EPR systems.
Propose and assess options to promote an optimal use of EPR in the EU.
The study is structured as follows:
European overview of existing EPR schemes in 28 MS (benchmark)
In-depth evaluation of 36 case studies in (focusing on 6 waste streams: Packaging, WEEE, ELVs, batteries, paper, oils
Identifying the main optimal characteristics for EPR schemes, options for common approach (“golden rules”)
Assisting Member States in improving waste management based on an assessment of their waste policy performance (2013)
Launched as part of the Commission's efforts to ensure proper implementation of EU waste legislation, this study aims at supporting EU Member States with the largest implementation gaps. It comprises the following phases:
Identifying objective criteria to assess the waste management situation in all Member States;
Screening of Member States according to these criteria in order to provide a 'scoreboard' and identify the 10 Member States with the largest implementation gaps. The screening report is available from the following link. Press release - Municipal waste Management.
Issuing, for these 10 Member States, concrete policy recommendations/Roadmaps and organising 10 bilateral meetings with relevant authorities in the respective capitals to discuss the way forward (autumn 2012);
Finalising the study and organising a final meeting with representatives of the 10 Member States (March/April 2013).
The study was launched in December 2011 and should be finalised in May 2013.
The Commission supports extensive research in the area of biodegradable plastics. The Community funded BIOMAT website gives details on the extensive amount of bioplastic research that has been carried out over the past 15 years under the different framework programmes. There is substantial potential for research projects on bioplastics under the Seventh Framework Programme (2006 - 2010) across several themes, and particularily from the biorefinery and microbial routes. For more information on Community funding opportunities for research, see also: http://cordis.europa.eu/en/home.html
Economic analysis of options for managing biodegradable municipal waste (2003)
Construction and Demolition Waste
End of Life Vehicles
European List of Waste
Study on the Review of the European List of Waste: see information on the Waste Framework Directive pages
Feasibility of the establishment of a Waste Implementation Agency (2009)
Green paper on Plastic Waste – results of the consultation (2013)
Implementing EU waste legislation for green growth (2011)
This study contains an in-depth analysis of the effects of proper implementation and enforcement of EU waste legislation, both in terms of the economic, social and environmental benefits of implementing EU waste legislation as well as through a number of specific case studies in Cyprus, Germany, Ireland, Italy and the Netherlands. The study also describes the necessary tasks to be carried out in order to overcome current implementation barriers and includes a number of options on how to deal with these tasks.
Implementation report for Directive 2006/21/EC2 on the management of waste from extractive industries (Mining Waste Directive) (2015)
Management of mining, quarrying and ore-processing waste in the European Union (2001)
A study on the costs of improving the management of mining waste (2001)
Study on the implementation of the Packaging Directive and options to strengthen prevention and re-use (2004)
Reuse of primary packaging (1999)
Evaluation of Costs and Benefits for the Achievement of Reuse and the Recycling Targets for the Different Packaging Materials in the Frame of the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive 94/62/EC (2003)
Organic contaminants in sewage sludge for agriculture use (2001) (pdf 1120K)
Refuse Derived Fuel, Current Practice and Perspectives (2003) (pdf ~ 900K)
Heavy Metals in Waste (2000)