R4R partners compare their performances - key findings
Regions for Recycling (R4R) aims at identifying effective local instruments that could help local and regional authorities to optimize municipal waste recycling.
One of the first topics that was tackled by the partnership was to draft a common method to present their data, so that a common comparison method could be established.
To do so the partners of the R4R project formed 4 peer review groups. These groups changed depending on the waste streams so that every partner could discuss its data with others.
Each group was provided with their respective data of 2010 regarding different waste fractions, highlighting differences in recycling performances.
The aim is to analyse the different results according to the separate
collection of all those waste streams and to obtain more comparable data
based on common definitions. The final goal is to improve the recycling
rates in general.
The data provided by the partners for paper and cardboard, bio-waste, metal, glass, waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE), textiles and wood was calculated by using their own methods. The data for the waste plastics was provided by the partners for the first time according to a common method.
The discussions led by the different working groups have highlighted several factors that can explain differences of recycling performances between territories. While the effectiveness of local instruments and recycling strategies seems to play an important role, other reasons can explain differences, in particular:
- data used for the comparisons were not always exhaustive and representative of the real quantities sent to recycling.
- the scope for municipal waste was not always the same (data about household waste collected through private systems, or share of commercial waste).
- the terminology for the different waste fractions was not always understood the same way.
- several external factors (such as the rate of home composting) can have an important impact on waste generation and waste collection rates.
These conclusions were taken into account while drafting the R4R methodology regarding the scope, terminology and indicators used to compare recycling performances.
Download the reports on R4R partners data comparison: