Waste prevention

An important element in circular economies is waste reduction and waste management. Yet waste prevention is the most desirable option. The success of the EU moving towards a green economy thus rests to a large extent on conducting research and giving priority to monitoring and choosing adapted solutions to achieve a sustainable production avoiding food losses and pollution. EU open data on waste management is beneficial to optimise existing techniques and mechanisms by using the information different EU institutions and agencies have stored. SMEs can use it to enhance their waste models to move through the path of a circular economy hand in hand with EU principles, innovation and resources. Waste prevention will contribute to the efforts made to comply with several Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Agenda 2030. Production patterns need to move towards a responsible and circular model (SDG 12) to protect Life on land (SDG 15) and as a way of reducing climate change negative impacts (SDG 13).

The map below allows for a quick overview of the amount of waste produced per country per year. Moreover, the interactive map also gives access to the most recent reports on waste reduction and resource efficiency, which are available by clicking on the country of interest. These reports are based on a revision of existing national and regional waste prevention programmes, and information on resource efficiency, circular economy and raw material supply policies.

For more information on the general progress made towards waste prevention in the EU, take a look at the Annual reviews from the European Environmental Agency (EEA). More details on waste reduction on the agriculture sector might be found here at the Technical Platform on the Measurement and Reduction of Food Loss and Waste from the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO). The database includes data and information on food losses and waste from different countries (including EU member states), at all stages of the value chain and across food products.

Dataset: EEA, Eurostat, EU Publications Office.