Paper recycling rate starting to plateau
ERPC - European Recovered Paper Council - has recently released their latest monitoring report which shows an increase in paper recycling rates in 2012 - from 70.4% in 2011 to 71.7% - but highlights that the sector is getting close to the achievable limits.
ERPC says that changes in consumption make hard even to maintain current recycling rates. These changes are mainly the sharp drop in newspaper consumption (highly recyclable product) and the increase in the use of tissues and sanitary papers, not recyclable for hygiene reasons.
ERPC and industry association CEPI remark that improvements can still be done, as ten EU countries - especially in eastern Europe - had a recycling rate below 60% in 2012.
Different projects are being carried out in order to improve materials and recyclability of paper goods; for example, the European Envelope Manufacturers Association (FEPE) developed EU ecolabel criteria, which should apply from 2014.
The R4R project
aims at helping cities and regions to recycle waste efficiently at a local level by providing good practices and an online monitoring tool.
Read the full monitoring report from ERPC