COLLECTORS is coming towards the end...
After 2.5 years of hard work the COLLECTORS consortium is ready to present all its findings and results! The documentation of many European local waste collection systems, the in-depth analysis of 12 specific case studies, as well as the involvement of different players of the recycling value chain, have enabled us to compile practical guidelines and policy recommendations to shift to better waste collection systems.
Without giving away too much, we can already give you a first taste with some preliminary conclusions. The COLLECTORS project found out that there is a need not only for improving knowledge but also the data available at local level on the potential for improvement, the quality and outcomes of sorted fractions, unreported WEEE streams, and costs of waste collection system. This hampers the proper comparison and identification of good practices for better aligning waste collection with the needs of end-users. More harmonization of sorted guidelines of paper and packaging waste can also be recommended, to make it easier for citizens to sort waste. When it comes to WEEE, much needs to be done to tackle illegal practices that seriously hinders local performances, the quality of sorted fractions, and the economic balance of collection systems. This can be promoted through the implementation of national policies (such as the ban on cash transaction for scrap metal), and the development of local actions (such as securing collection points). Financial instruments yield a significant potential for improving local performances. Adequate national instruments should be implemented to make sure that re-use and recycling are economically-viable options for local waste collection systems.
We originally planned to share these results at our final conference in Brussels this June. Unfortunately, the unforeseen consequences of the COVID-19 situation have forced us to postpone our final event. Keep an eye on the COLLECTORS website where we will soon announce the new date.