The Treatment of Non-Recyclable Waste



In Europe in 2018, out of a total of around 220 million tons of municipal waste generated, 116 million tons was non-recyclable waste. What is non-recyclable waste and what are the options to treat it?

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Products that are not fit for reuse or recycling are called “non-recyclable waste”. In Europe in 2018, 116 million tons were non-recyclable waste, out of a total of 220 million tons of municipal waste generated. There are two options for this kind of waste: Waste-to-Energy or Landfilling.

The advantages of Waste-to-Energy:

  • Recovery of energy and materials
  • Avoidance of methane emissions
  • Abatement of odor nuisance
  • Over 90% reduction of volume
  • Saving of valuable land

What is non-recyclable waste? 

Non-recyclable waste can be quite diverse items, for a variety of reasons:

  • Polluted waste
  • Degraded waste (e.g. after several rounds of recycling)
  • Waste made up of composite materials

Waste generation will greatly increase worldwide by 2050. Our duty is to manage it in a sustainable way.

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