News: Europarliament calls for biowaste directive and mandatory separate collection


Household Waste Bins in Finland - Public domain image

Strasbourg, 6th July 2010.  The EU needs a specific bio-waste directive, as this could generate major economic and environmental benefits, the European Parliament believes. Compulsory separate collection and recycling of bio-waste should be a central plank of the legislation, say MEPs in a resolution adopted on Tuesday.

Every year, between 118 and 138 million tons of bio-waste (food and garden waste from households and industry) are produced in the EU. Full implementation of existing bio-waste legislation could result in environmental and financial benefits of €1.5 billion to €7 billion, yet it is not enforced sufficiently.

In the resolution drawn up by José Manuel Fernandes (EPP, PT) on the Commission Green Paper on the management of bio-waste in the EU, MEPs argue that a specific directive for bio-waste would offer greater clarity, better monitoring and enforcement of implementation and legal certainty in this area.

They therefore urge the Commission to review existing legislation and bring forward a draft a directive by the end of 2010, including:

  • the establishment of a mandatory separate collection system for the Member States, except where this is not the appropriate option from the environmental and economic point of view;
  • the recycling of bio-waste;
  • a quality-based classification of the different types of compost from bio-waste.

The resolution emphasises that the separate collection of bio-waste needs to be stepped up to reach the targets for recycling and renewable energies and to help achieve the goals of the EU 2020 strategy, in particular resource efficiency.

Lastly, MEPs urge the Commission and Member States to raise public awareness of waste prevention and recycling as well as to encourage and support scientific research and technological innovation in the field of bio-waste management.

Read the European Parliament Report on the Commission Green Paper on the management of bio-waste in the European Union by clicking here.

Citation:  Press Release of the European Parliament REF: 20100705IPR77803

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