LIFE-IP CEI-Greece - Circular Economy Implementation in Greece

LIFE18 IPE/GR/000013

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Contact details:

Contact person: Sofia MANI
Tel: +302131513199
Fax: -
Email: S.Mani@prv.ypeka.gr

Project description:


The National Action Plan on Circular Economy (NAPCE), was developed as Greeces response to the EU Action Plan for the Circular Economy. It was endorsed by the Governmental Economic Policy Council in 2018. The NAPCE details short-term priority interventions aimed at the promotion of the circular economy in Greece. The strategic long-term goals for 2030 included in the NAPCE focus on, amongst others, further applying the waste hierarchy, focusing on the prevention of waste production, recycling and supporting circular economy consumption patterns of re-using, re-storing and repairing especially for electrical and electronic equipment.

The National Waste Management Plan (NWMP) and its accompanying National Strategic Plan for Waste Prevention (NSPWP) have a five-year horizon (2015-2020). These two plans set the policy directions on waste management at national level. They also provide general guidelines, by indicating the appropriate measures and actions to achieve the targets set in Greek Law 4042/2012 (enforcing the EU Waste Framework Directive). In line with the provisions of the NWMP, 13 Regional Waste Management Plans (RWMPs) have been drafted (one for each Region) and ratified. Local management plans (municipality level) were also assessed in the context of drafting RWMPs. In 2017, almost 80% of municipal waste produced was landfilled, even though with a slightly decreasing trend since 2015. It is evident that additional effort is needed to achieve waste management targets set by the existing and forthcoming national and EU legislation. Furthermore, in order to lay the foundations for the implementation of the circular economy principles, a resource management concept that moves beyond the traditional waste management practices should be established, focusing on waste prevention and re-use.


The main objective of the LIFE-IP CEI-Greece project is to reduce the amount of municipal waste sent to landfill and to promote waste prevention and re-use, based on circular economy principles. Specifically, the project will:

  • implement concrete waste management actions in line with the waste hierarchy principles, to ensure waste diversion to the levels set by national and EU law;
  • develop demonstration project actions in four targeted fields (waste food prevention, reuse, hazardous household waste management, economic incentives), in nine municipalities (5 islands, 1 mountainous, 3 urban) and one region (Western Macedonia);
  • enhance the use of economic instruments in support of the circular economy, as well as of secondary materials' standards in this context;
  • guide the forthcoming revision of waste management plans;
  • build-up a knowledge base to support the monitoring of the circular economy, particularly in the field of waste management;
  • improve awareness of key stakeholders, authorities and the general public on the concept of the circular economy and its implication for waste management;
  • mobilise external financial resources to enable the creation of the necessary supportive infrastructure for the implementation of the NWMP; and
  • disseminate the project results, and organise capacity building workshops, to ensure their implementation and replication in other regions.
  • In addition to the IP budget itself, the project will facilitate the coordinated use of 800 309 080 EUR of complementary funding from the ESIF (European Structural and Investment Funds) and national funds.


    Expected results:

    • the establishment of three Enhanced Green Centres (EGCs) (one in the Municipality of Thessaloniki and two in the Municipality of Athens), estimated to serve a population of over 100 000 inhabitants in each. The waste collection rate of EGCs, destined for reuse and recycling is estimated at 8 250 tn in total, while the estimated quantities for preparation for reuse equal to 1 650 tn in total;
    • five Integrated Waste Management systems in four islands and one mountainous area to increase the amount of waste prepared for reuse and recycling by at least 55%, reduce the amount landfilled and therefore its environmental impacts, create at least 94 jobs, and promote behavioural change through an intensive communication campaign;
    • two integrated Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) collection and management systems, in the Region of Western Macedonia and in the Municipality of Athens, covering at least 60% of both areas populations and reaching at least 50% separate collection rates, with total managed HHW quantities of around 1700 tn and4 000 tn, respectively;
    • full implementation of a Pay-As-You-Throw (PAYT) system in the Municipality of Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni serving approximately 48 000 inhabitants;
    • the first baseline study for food waste generation in Greece in specific sectors (post-harvest losses, food processing industry, wholesale and retailers, households, and hospitality/catering sector);
    • creation of a platform for food waste prevention, linking at least 1 000 donors (producers, retailers, hospitality and catering sector) with 500 charities (social organisations, institutions and communities in need), to redistribute at least 40 tn of surplus food per year;
    • a Food Waste Prevention Forum to be adopted by different sectors and stakeholders involved in the food waste generation chain;
    • a Repair and Reuse Experiential Park in Thessaloniki for recovery of materials, reuse, preparing for reuse, sharing, and donations;
    • assessment for the development of National Circular Economy indicators to secure the integration of the NWMP and the NSPWP with the NAPCE;
    • development of a web-based National Circular Economy Repository; and
    • ten new standards to enable the harmonisation of definitions and classifications of products/by-products, end-of-waste criteria, and the drafting of qualitative standards for secondary raw materials.

    • Top

Environmental issues addressed:


Environmental management - Circular economy and Value chains
Waste - Agricultural waste
Waste - Municipal waste (including household and commercial)
Waste - Packaging and plastic waste
Waste - Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE)
Waste - Waste recycling
Waste - Hazardous waste
Waste - Waste reduction - Raw material saving


indicator‚  plastic‚  municipal waste‚  organic waste‚  solid waste‚  hazardous waste‚  management plan‚  domestic waste‚  waste use‚  waste recycling‚  waste treatment‚  waste reduction

Target EU Legislation

  • Waste
  • Directive 1999/31 - Landfill of waste (26.04.1999)

Natura 2000 sites

Not applicable



Coordinator Ministry of Environment and Energy
Partners Municipality of Thessaloniki-Greece Municipality of Alonissos-Greece Municipality of Antiparos-Greece Waste Management of Western Macedonia S.A.-Greece Municipality of Tinos-Greece National Quality Infrastructure System-Greece National Centre for the Environment and Sustainable Development-Greece Municipality of Nafpaktia-Greece DAFNI Network of Sustainable Greek Islands-Greece Ecological Recycling Society-Greece Municipality of Thira-Greece TERRA NOVA Environmental Engineering Consultancy Ltd.-Greece Municipality of Paros-Greece Municipality of Athens-Greece Harokopio University of Athens-Greece Hellenic Recycling Agency-Greece Green Fund-Greece Municipality of Vari-Voula-Vouliagmeni-Greece


Project reference LIFE18 IPE/GR/000013
Duration 15-JUL-2019 to 31-OCT -2027
Total budget 15,934,810.00 €
EU contribution 9,560,739.00 €
Project location


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