Environment: 80 per cent of Europeans want their country to waste less
According to a new survey, most European citizens think their own country is generating too much waste. The survey on the "Attitudes of Europeans towards Waste Management and Resource Efficiency" indicates that 96 % of respondents say it is important for them that Europe uses its resources more efficiently: 68 % say this is very important for them, and just 3 % of respondents say this issue is not important. Across the EU, nine out of ten respondents now sort paper/cardboard/beverage cartons (90 %), plastics (90%) and glass (88 %), at least occasionally, while three quarters sort household hazardous waste (79 %), metal cans (78 %), electrical waste (76 %) and kitchen waste (74 %). There are, however, major differences between Member States, with replies ranging from 99 % (paper in Austria) to 28 % (hazardous waste in Romania).
Environment Commissioner Janez Potocnik said: "Waste clearly touches a nerve: Europeans want to waste less, and they are making efforts to practise what they preach. This makes moving to a more circular economy a logical step forward. The appetite for more recycling is there: now we need to deliver the mechanisms to help it happen."
When asked about ways to encourage more recycling, 71 % of respondents said reassurance that their waste is effectively recycled would persuade them to separate more of their waste. A majority favours more and better waste recycling and composting facilities in their area (59 %), financial incentives (59 %), and more convenient separate waste collection at their home (51 %).
Eight out of ten people (83 %) say that they avoid food waste and other types of waste by buying exactly what they need, while three out of four (77 %) make an effort to get broken appliances repaired before buying new ones. Two out of three respondents (67 %) donate or sell items for re-use, while roughly six out of ten people avoid buying over-packaged goods (62 %), use rechargeable batteries (60 %) or drink tap water to avoid packaging waste (59 %).
Read more: http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-14-750_en.htm