The private waste management sector welcomes the new EU Methane Strategy
Brussels, 20 October 2020 – On Wednesday, 14 October, the European Commission adopted the new EU Methane Strategy, as part of the European Green Deal and the EU zero-pollution ambition. The European private waste management sector, represented by FEAD, a key contributor to the decarbonisation of the European economy, supports this new strategy which should work together with the Circular Economy Action Plan, and in particular, it should:
- Ensure better data collection to accurately identify the main targets for methane reduction;
- Strengthen synergies between sectors including biogas production that reduce methane emissions from manure; valorise waste streams that would decarbonise the energy system through the production of biogas;
- Guarantee the implementation of existing rules on landfilling and separate collection of biowaste, rendering it fully effective by 2023 in all EU Member States;
- Introduce high composting targets to boost resource efficiency and biowaste recovery;
- Propose further ambitious measures to significantly reduce methane emissions from landfilling, treatment/use of sewage sludge, and treatment of wastewater;
- Assess the impact of an EU-wide ban on landfilling of recyclable and recoverable waste.
The Commission plans to review the existing Landfill Directive in 2024, and FEAD would like to highlight the importance of recycling, waste recovery, and diverting waste from landfilling; including organic waste that contributes to methane emissions.
Current debates at the European Parliament are beginning to address the issue of banning landfilling of recyclable and recoverable waste at EU level, and it should be reflected in their report on the new Circular Economy Action Plan.
It is imperative that the European Commission examine and assess the effectiveness of existing legislative measures relating to landfilling, and implement much stronger measures to divert recyclable/recoverable waste from landfilling. This can ultimately be achieved hand in hand, with the necessary, appropriate and binding legislation to boost recycling and recovery.
To successfully implement selective collection schemes and recycling/recovery facilities, massive EU funds are required to ensure appropriate funding. This financial support is critical for waste treatment to be pushed higher up the waste hierarchy.