Plastic waste in Europe

Statista overview report on waste, recycling, and the future of plastic material in Europe

Plastic waste in Europe

With around 60 million tons of plastic produced every year, thinking a circular economy for plastic is a crucial challenge in Europe. While the EU sets higher goals for waste treatment, the volume of plastic packaging waste does not show signs of decline. Also, the plastic crisis is worsened by the problematic conditions of plastic waste export to Asian countries due to the China ban.
This report aims at giving an overview of the facts and figures regarding plastic production and recycling, together with insights on environmental effects of plastic supply and recycling processes. Ultimately, the report contains a snapshot on the expected production capacity of bio-based plastic.

Table of contents


  • Plastic production and demand
  • Plastic packaging and waste
  • Main packaging plastic types

Plastic waste treatment
  • EU goals and waste volumes
  • Recycling and recovery processes
  • Best practices

Plastic waste trade
  • Plastic waste trade
  • China ban
  • Illegal dumping

Impact on the environment
  • Gas emissions
  • Marine debris and microplastics
  • Potential health risks

Sustainable plastic
  • Bioplastics explained
  • Bioplastics production
  • Biodegradable plastic

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