Sustainable Croatia Makes Top 5 EU Countries That Increased Recycling

Katarina Anđelković

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April 17, 2023 – The European Union recently announced plans to reduce household waste by a fifth, increasing the pressure for an environmentally conscious way of life. Sustainable Croatia makes the top five countries that increased their recycling rates.

As a result, the company Clear it Waste, in cooperation with Eurostat, conducted a survey of the countries to see how much they have reduced the total amount of waste in the past ten years. And according to the results of the survey, Croatia has something to be proud of – from 2012 to now, the amount of recycling in Croatia has increased by 114 percent, which ranks it in the top 5 countries in terms of progress within the EU.

Slovakia is in first place, having increased recycling rates by 265%. Poland follows with 236%, and Latvia is just over 200%, while in Bulgaria they managed to increase the amount of waste available for recycling by 162%.

After Croatia and its 114%, Lithuania (89%), the Czech Republic (87%), Estonia (59%), and Slovenia (43%) follow, which started on the path of “green living” even before 2012…

In particular, Slovakia’s success in this regard is fascinating because in 2012, only 13.4% of waste was recyclable, and in 2021 it reached 40.3%, while Bulgaria is at an enviable 65.5%. On the other hand, Croatia went from a low of 14.7% in 2012 to 31.4% of usable waste in 2021, which is still almost 20% behind the EU average (49.6%).

With the exception of Bulgaria, the Central European countries Austria (62.3%) and Slovenia (60%) are still leading, followed by the Benelux countries: the Netherlands (57.8%), Luxembourg (55.3%) and Belgium (53.3%).

According to the same survey, the lowest result was recorded in Romania, which went in the opposite direction from its first neighbor, Bulgaria, because the recycling rate in the mentioned ten years (2012-2021) fell by 24%, and significant drops also occurred in Denmark (-19% ) and Sweden (-16%). In addition to the most significant drop, Romanians are the worst overall, with only 11.3% of reusable waste.

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