EPA Waste Data Release, 26 October 2018
Reference Year 2016
Ireland met all EU targets for recovery and recycling of packaging waste in 2016.
Percentage recovery and recycling rates, 2009 to 2016
Packaging is used to contain, protect and present goods, and it is made from materials such as glass, paper & cardboard, metals, plastic, wood, and composite materials. The EU Packaging and Waste Packaging Directive promotes the recovery and recycling of packaging waste to reduce its environmental impact and encourage resource efficiency. Each Member State is obliged to meet targets for the overall recovery of waste packaging and recycling targets for glass, plastic, paper & board, metals and wood.
- It is estimated that more than 990,000 tonnes of packaging waste was generated.
- The majority, by weight, of packaging waste was recycled.
- Of the total generated, an estimated 88% were recovered. This includes 67% of waste packaging that was recycled.
The amount of black bin (residual) waste sent for incineration with energy recovery has increased in Ireland, particularly since 2012. Some waste management facilities mechanically process waste and produce Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF) and Solid Recovered Fuel (SRF). Much residual waste, RDF and SRF is sent for energy recovery rather than disposal to landfill and this is reflected in the increase in packaging waste recovery in Ireland. The prevention, preparation for reuse and recycling of waste packaging is preferable to energy recovery. New ambitious recycling targets for waste packaging are proposed under the European Commission’s Circular Economy Package and will be challenging for Ireland to achieve.
|Material||Packaging waste generated||Recovered or incinerated at waste incineration plants with energy recovery by:||Recycling rate %||Rate of recovery or incineration at waste incineration plants with energy recovery %|
|Material recycling||Other forms of recycling||Total recycling||Energy recovery||Other forms of recovery||Incineration at waste incineration plants with energy recovery||Total recovery and incineration at waste incineration plants with energy recovery|
|Paper & board||412,468||319,167||7,587||326,754||31,084||3,504||28,436||389,778||79||95|
|Data table for 2016 reference year as submitted to the European Commission.|
|Data in tonnes unless otherwise specified.|
|Material||Packaging waste sent to other Member States or exported outside the Community for:|
|Material recycling||Other forms of recycling||Energy recovery||Other forms of recovery||Incineration at waste incineration plants with energy recovery|
|Paper & board||318,000||17,000|
|Data table for 2016 reference year as submitted to the European Commission|
|Data in tonnes|
|Material||Packaging Directive recycling target||Recycling rate, 2016|
|Glass||60% by weight||86%|
|Plastic||22.5% by weight, counting exclusively material that is recycled back into plastics||36%, counting all material recycling|
|Paper & board||60% by weight||79%|
|Metals||50% by weight||70%|
|Wood||15% by weight||75%|