NGOs call for defunding of incineration capacity in Central and Eastern European countries

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Brussels, Bucharest, Ljubljana, Prague, Sophia, Warsaw, Vilnius and Zagreb

Following a call from the European Commission for defunding of waste-to-energy, NGOs urge Central and Eastern European (CEE) governments to reconsider any potential investment in waste incineration.

On 27 January, the European Commission [1] called on Member States to address incineration overcapacity and prioritise waste prevention by repair and reuse as well as recycling instead.

NGOs have taken the opportunity to express concern over potential new investments in over 80 waste incinerators and about 40 mechanical biological treatment facilities across CEE countries.

The construction of new incineration facilities could come as a result of an old agreement with the European Commission which was signed prior to the release of the Circular Economy Package in 2015.

CEE countries were granted € 5.4 billion to improve waste management systems, including recycling, for the period 2014-2020. However, the agreement also envisaged the allocation of over 50% of the available funds for the development of thermal treatment and incineration facilities.

NGOs said that if governments carry through plans to expand incineration, they will jeopardise the implementation of a progressive waste reduction and recycling system.

For more information, please see original communication from NGOs.

List of signatories:

  • Arnika – Toxics and Waste Programme
  • Alliance of Associations Polish Green Network (PZS)
  • Association New Idea (SNI)
  • Alter eko Foundation
  • CEE Bankwatch Network
  • Circular Economy Lithuania (ZE)
  • Ecologists Without Borders (EBM)
  • European Environmental Bureau (EEB)
  • Friends of the Earth Bulgaria (ZZ)
  • Friends of the Earth Croatia (ZA)
  • Friends of the Earth Czech Republic (HD)
  • Friends of the Earth Europe
  • Friends of the Earth Hungary

Notes to Editors:


For more information:

Mauro Anastasio, Communications Officer, European Environmental Bureau

+32 2 274 10 87

NGOs call for defunding of incineration capacity in Central and Eastern European countries
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