R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES

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1 R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES Helping cities and regions to improve their selective collection and recycling strategies November 2014

2 1. THE R4R PROJECT IN A NUTSHELL 1.1 The birth of Regions for Recycling Within the European Union, 492 kg of municipal waste was generated per person in 2012, with only 42% of it being recycled or composted. Performances vary a lot between Member States, but also within each Member State: some regions already exceed the 50% recycling target to be reached by 2020, while others are really lagging behind. However, having a real and effective comparison between European territories is difficult for several reasons: different scopes of municipal waste, divergent indicators methodologies, local specificities, etc. From 2012 to 2014, 13 European partners gathered around the Regions for Recycling project, an initiative built up with the support of the INTERREG IV C programme, with the aim of developing effective instruments and identifying good practices to enable cities and regions to improve their selective collection and recycling performances. 1.2 The R4R results In order to reach the project s objective, the R4R partners followed this approach: starting from comparing local data, the partners built a common framework for comparisons and analysed external factors and local instruments. Later on, they identified and shared good practices and assessed transfer and implementation opportunities. After three years of intensive work, exchange of expertise and collaboration, the R4R project led to: a common method for data comparison (same scope and definitions, common range of indicators), an online tool enabling cities and regions to compare their results with other European territories, a list of 40 good practices among local legal, technical, economic and communication instruments that can be transferred onto other territories, a series of implementation plans describing how the partners will apply the R4R results in the future, a website and networking activities and trainings for cities and regions. More information: R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 2

3 2. THE R4R PARTNERS 1- ORDIF (Lead Partner), FR 2- Association of Cities and Regions for Recycling and sustainable Resource management (ACR+) 3- OVAM, BE 4- Odense Waste Management, DK 5- Lisbon City Council, PT 6- Efxini Poli / Ecorec, EL 7- Southern Waste Region, IE 8- Federal State Government of Styria / Arge, AT 9- Tallinn City, EE 10- Waste Agency of Catalonia (ARC), ES 11- Municipality of Sofia, BG 12- City of Zagreb, HR 13- Ilfov County Council, RO R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 3

4 3. A COMMON METHODOLOGY FOR WASTE DATA MONITORING 3.1 A clarification of municipal solid waste In order to make valuable comparisons and benchmarks, a common language is needed. The first step consisted in ensuring that the concept of municipal waste was the same for all partners. Municipal solid waste is defined as all the waste generated by households (regardless who collects it) plus the non-household waste collected by or on behalf of the municipalities plus similar nonhousehold WEEE and batteries collected by or on behalf of accredited bodies. Are excluded from MSW: construction and demolition waste, end-of-life vehicles, water treatment and waste water treatment sludge, sewage sludge. 3.2 DREC Destination RECycling In order to be able to compare their performances, R4R partners also developed a material-based method and a new concept taking into account all fractions that are sent to recycling (including organic recovery) whether they are sorted at the source or in mechanical sorting centres: Destination RECycling or DREC, as illustrated below. Read more about the DREC methodology on the R4R website: R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 4

5 4. AN ONLINE TOOL TO BENCHMARK WASTE PERFORMANCES AND SHARE GOOD PRACTICES On the basis of the DREC methodology, the R4R project gave birth to an online tool aimed at providing a common platform to share and compare waste data, link performances with local instruments and give access to a database of good practices. In order to allow detailed comparison, users are asked to provide the following type of information: general information about the city/region & external factors, quantitative data according to the harmonised DREC methodology, local instruments in force on the user s territory. Once the information is filled, the R4R online tool allows local and regional authorities to: Benchmark with other European territories, Produce reports showing evolution in time, Get information about good practices. Access the R4R online tool: R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 5

6 5. GOOD PRACTICES BASED ON PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE About 40 good practices were identified, analysed and shared during the project. A few samples of these practices are presented to you hereafter. You can discover them all on the R4R website: Mobile civic amenity sites in Île-de-France, FR This innovative solution addresses waste collection at source in an area where the implementation of traditional civic amenity sites is extremely challenging (because of urbanization, high population density and limited access of citizens to personal vehicles for the transport of bulky waste). It consists in the temporary installation of collection containers on public areas such as town squares and marketplaces, whereby both opening hours and communication strategy are coordinated with local authorities. The service is provided free of charge to inhabitants of the municipality and allows collection of different waste fractions, including construction and demolition waste, mixed bulky waste, garden waste, WEEE and textiles. Since its introduction, the system has been perceived very positively by the population and the sites have attracted increasing number of visitors. 5.2 Pay-as-you-throw scheme in Flanders, BE The system includes two elements. On the one hand, the implementation of a Pay as you throw scheme charges households based on the amount of waste they throw away. On the other hand, differentiated tariffs for the various waste streams encourage separate collection of fractions that can be recycled, reused or composted. Regular communication and awareness raising campaigns and the use of other legal instruments (such as landfill and incineration levies) help to make the system a success. R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 6

7 5.3 Civic amenity sites in Odense, DK A dense network of Civic Amenity Sites in Odense offers a convenient way for citizens to dispose of their waste. The sites have containers for approximately 30 different waste fractions and the number is constantly adapted as recycling technology progresses. On each site, explanatory signs assist the visitors in finding their way and trained staff is present to offer help and advice when needed. The use of the sites is continuously promoted through regular communication and awareness raising campaigns. The three factors provision of infrastructure, information and motivation ensure good separation at source and high purity of materials for further recycling. 5.4 Door-to-door selective collection in Lisbon, PT Replacing collection of different fractions in bring banks, selective door-to-door collection of paper/ cardboard and packages was introduced gradually to complement the already existing door-to-door collection of residual waste. In addition, selective collection of organic waste was also implemented in small commercial premises such as restaurants, canteens and markets. The collection frequency was also adapted progressively, the collection of the residual fraction alternating with the collection of recyclable waste. Personal contacts with the waste producers at the moment of collection serve to disseminate communication material and to clarify possible doubts related to waste separation. Additional communication is used to generate public awareness to the new system. Local stakeholders were consulted and involved in the different phases of the implementation. After the introduction of the system, the amount of selectively collected recyclable materials has seen a significant increase. R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 7

8 5.5 Door-to-door information campaign in Elefsina, EL In collaboration with the non-governmental organization ECOREC, the municipality of Elefsina has implemented door-to-door information campaigns to promote recycling practices among the population. The campaigns consisted in personal visits to individual households with the purpose of providing them information about the recycling facilities of the municipality. The visits were carried out by young citizens who had received initial training and were provided with communication material. Up to three visits were made in order to ensure that households were properly informed about existing waste management infrastructure and collection points for different waste streams. The campaign resulted in increased rates of recycling for some waste fractions, higher levels of general public awareness towards waste management practices and the strengthening of social bounds and sense of commitment toward the community. 5.6 Bio-waste collection in South Waste Region, IE In order to fulfill the obligations of the EU Landfill Directive, the Southern Region of Ireland started implementing kerbside separate collection of organic waste. The legislation obliges both commercial producers and households to sort food waste at the source and make it available for collection in brown bins. Private waste management firms, who are primarily in charge of waste collection in Ireland, provide the main financing of the system. Since the introduction of the brown bin, the quantity of household and commercial biodegradable waste collected within the region increased significantly. R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 8

9 5.7 Municipal waste consultancy in Styria, AT This initiative focuses on the use of human capital prior to technical solutions to solve environmental problems and reduce public expenses. The concept of municipal waste consultants was developed by the national Association for Waste Prevention (ARGE) and was financially backed-up by several national and regional authorities who saw the potential for employment opportunities and improved waste management. The municipal waste consultant is a public employee with various roles and responsibilities that can range from raising awareness of the general public, to educating children from schools or kindergartens about waste prevention and separate waste collection, and to developing waste management strategies for businesses or public entities. 5.8 Hazardous waste collection scheme in Tallinn, EE In order to improve the rate of hazardous waste collection and increase recycling, a network of hazardous waste collection points has been established. The points are located in different places in the municipality in a way that is convenient for citizens for instance, at gas stations, near shopping centers or residential buildings. Reconditioned sea containers proved to be an interesting solution for the purpose as they are mobile and it is possible to change their location if needed. A consultant at the collection point ensures the quality of separation by helping to put the waste in the correct bin and can provide general advice on household waste management. Clear and visible signs in several languages further explain and assist waste sorting. The system has been effective at collecting hazardous waste of good quality, reducing littering in the city and surrounding areas and creating new employment. Regular promotion of the system using different communication channels has further contributed to high levels of acceptance by citizens. R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 9

10 5.9 Bio-waste treatment and collection in Catalonia, ES Bio-waste traditionally represents a high proportion of MSW in Catalonia, while at the same time the soils in the region are generally poor in organic matter. It was, therefore, decided to implement a system for the separate collection of bio-waste from households and some commercial producers (such as markets, restaurants and caterers). The collected bio-waste is then treated at composting plants or at facilities that combine composting and anaerobic digestion, transforming organic matter into compost with the aim of improving soil quality. In rural areas, where the set-up of collection routes is not feasible, the deployment of home and community composters is subsidized. The collected material undergoes constant quality control, and awareness and information campaigns directed at citizens have contributed to high purity of the waste stream and to good acceptance of the system Hazardous waste collection in Sofia, BG Spurred by national legislation and by demand on the side of the citizens, the municipality of Sofia introduced a system of separate collection for household hazardous waste. This waste can be collected directly from citizens if they make a request in advance or once a month at a mobile collection point. The service is free to the citizens and the municipality subcontracts to an private company the implementation of different activities: provision and running of mobile collection points, acceptance of requests from citizens, collection and treatment of waste, dissemination of information. Since the introduction of the system, the collection of several hazardous waste materials such as solvents, paints, oils, glues and medicines has increased significantly. R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 10

11 5.11 Separate collection pilot project in Zagreb, HR In order to facilitate the implementation of a recent change in the legislation linking the municipal waste collection fee to the amount of generated waste, the City of Zagreb launched a pilot project in several areas to facilitate waste separation at source and achieve higher rates of recycling and reuse. The project consists in providing citizens with bags and containers for the separate collection of different materials (paper/cardboard, glass, packaging, textiles), as well as with bring bank containers located throughout the tested district areas. At the same time communication material was sent out, informative posters at key locations were displayed and educational events and workshops were organized WEEE recycling in Ilfov, RO In Romania, where the rate of purchasing of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) is lower than in other EU countries, several measures were taken to stimulate the collection of the resulting waste. The measures address both the supply side, by making EEE producers and importers responsible for their products, and the demand side, by applying charges to consumers for their purchase of a new product ( green stamp policy ). Options are provided for consumers to deliver their WEEE at civic amenity sites or, alternatively, to give it back to retailers and get a discount when buying a new similar product ( buy-back campaigns). Two associations were further created who take over the responsibility for managing WEEEs from producers and importers and are in charge of collecting and treating the waste and providing information to the public about proper waste management. R4R GUIDELINES FOR LOCAL AND REGIONAL AUTHORITIES 11

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