Romania, among the EU states on the short end on plastic packaging waste recycling

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Romanians rank among the last in the EU on plastic packaging waste recycling, however, better than other countries such as Denmark or France.

In 2020, each person living in the EU generated 34.6 kg of plastic packaging waste on average. Out of these, 13.0 kg were recycles, according to the latest Eurostat report on this topic.

Between 2010 and 2020, the volume of plastic packaging waste generated per inhabitant increased by 23% (+6.5 kg). The recycled volume of plastic packaging waste increased over the same period, by 32% (+3.2 kg). Despite this improvement, the amount of plastic packaging that wasn’t recycled increased by 3.4 kg per inhabitant since 2010 due to the greater increase in the absolute amount of plastic packaging waste generated.

The Netherlands, Lithuania, Slovakia, Spain, Bulgaria and Cyprus recycled more than half of their plastic packaging waste generated. In contrast, less than one-third of plastic packaging waste was recycled in Malta, France, Denmark, Hungary, Ireland, Romania, Poland and Austria.

In 2020, stricter rules for reporting recycling entered into force. These include a harmonised calculation point for recycling and stricter accounting of composite packaging material fractions. Due to that, a provisional decrease of 3 percentage points was observed (from 41% in 2019 to an estimated 38% in 2020).

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