Environmental Protection & Preservation
Huge Revenues for the Waste Management and Recycling Market
An estimated 1,3 billion tones of waste
is generated annually in the EU and this is still steadily increasing. The
overall volume of waste is growing at rates proportional to the economic
growth rate of the EU25. Amongst the various streams of waste generated,
management of hazardous and municipal waste alone costs the EU an estimated
EUR75 billion annually. This translates to the waste management and
recycling industry earning huge revenues that are expected to increase
enormously in the next few years.
Frost & Sullivan
finds that the
European Waste Management and Recycling market earns annually revenues of 100 billions euros in total.
The waste management and recycling industry's growth is driven by
stronger environmental laws set by the EU. "This has been done to prevent
any irreversible damage a slow growing and uncompetitive recycling and
waste handling industry might have on the environment - explains Ajay
Richard, Research Associate at Frost & Sullivan, Environment Group -.
Starting with the 1975 Waste Regulation Legislation to the proposals for
its revision in 2006 the EU has considered waste management to be an
integral part of their environmental policy. The proposed thematic approach
to waste management has drawn the attention industry people previously
uninterested in environmental legislature".
Historically the EU has focused on the treatment and disposal of the
end-waste and has had many positive impacts. "However, this methodology
alone could never control the amount of waste being discharged at all waste
streams - comments Mr Richard -. Now the legislative focus is on waste
prevention and minimization. This shift in thinking is reflected by the
thematic approach to waste management being incorporated into the revision
of Directive 75/442/EEC, the Waste Framework Directive. The thematic
approach aims to reduce negative environmental impacts by reducing the use
of natural resources and promoting a more efficient use of resources".
"With landfills being decommissioned slowly and /or being monitored
carefully, and strict incineration legislation, the recycling industry is
expected to grow steadily as the EU shifts towards being a recycling
society - continues Frost & Sullivan research analyst -. The percentage of
municipal wastes being recycled needs to increase sharply to overcome the
burden of excessive waste generation". Furthermore, as mentioned above,
rising economic growth is expected to increase the per capita municipal
waste generation in the newer member states of the EU25. Also the treatment
and need for value addition to waste in these newly joined member states
should provide immense opportunities for the major recycling and waste
treatment firms of Western Europe.
The stricter legislation expected to be implemented in 2008 should
provide immense opportunities to waste management firms. These
opportunities can be realized by focusing their growth strategies on
efficient technologies and customizing waste treatment to ensure the
recycled waste is a resource for an industry.
The important thing for all manufacturing industries is to identify
waste reduction methodologies in their production and for many
manufacturers to quantify the end of life impact and reclamation costs of
This study is part of a research portfolio in the European Waste
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