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  1. General facts
  2. National legislative framework
  3. National policies on waste
  4. Instruments
  5. Data on waste management
  6. National legislation on waste (selected)
  7. Competent Authorities
  8. Bibliography

1. General facts

General facts
Surface area 505997Km²
Population (tousand inhabitans) 41664
Population density 83 inhabitants/Km²
Average number of persons per private

Passenger cars per 1000 inhabitants** 460
GDP per capita in Purchasing Power
Standards(PPS) EU25=100

GDP per capita (Constant prices) EUR 14883 (at 1995 and exchange rates)
Land use*** -
Household characteristics by
urbanisation degree, distribution of
households % ****
50% in densely populated areas(at least 500 inhab./Km²)
19% in intermediate urbanised areas(100 - 499 inhab./Km²)
31% in sparsely populated areas(less than 100 inhab./Km²)
Gross value added (GVA) -
At current basic prices and current
exchange rates (% of all branches).
18% Industry, including energy
11% Construction
26% Trade, transport and communication services
21% Buisness activities and financial services
21% Other services
4% Agriculture, hunting and fishing

Source: Source: Eurostat, 2004 except from * 2003; ** EUROSTAT/DGTREN, 2002; ***1999

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2. National legislative framework

National acts/laws on waste management
Reference Main features
Waste Law 10/1998
  • Waste Framework National Legislation.
  • Transposition of Waste Framework Directive
  • Introduces separate collections in municipalities above 5000 inhabitants.
  • Recyclable or recoverable wastes are not allowed to be disposed.
National waste management plans
Period of implementation Main features
National Urban Solid Waste Management Plan 2000-06 Main targets of the Plan:
  • Stabilise waste amounts
  • Introduce separate collections in municipalities above 5000 inhabitants by 2001, above 1000 inhabitants by 2006
  • Promote packaging recycling and reuse;
  • Valorisation of BMW, especially via composting;
  • Correct disposal of waste; 17,7% incineration by 2006
A specific activities and National Programs are drafted and an estimation of the economical effort is given.
National Plan on C&D waste 2001-2006 National plan for C&D waste management
  • 90% of amounts shall be correctly managed by 2006;
  • Reuse and recycling of min 60%
National Plan for End-Of-Live-Vehicles 2001-2006
  • Centres for collection and "decontamination” to be realised by 2003;
  • From 1-1-03 vehicles must be delivered to these centres
National Plan for Used Tyres 2001-2006 Incineration without energy-recovery and landfilling not allowed since 2003
Catalan Decree 1/1997 Draws a Regional Strategy for BMW management, including obligation for separate collection
Catalan Municipal Waste Management Programme (PROGREMIC) - 2001
Transposition of landfill and incineration directives
Transposition Act/Law/decree Year of transposition Text available
Landfill directive99/31 Royal Decree 1481/2001 on Landfill 27 December, 2001 (BOE 29 January, 2002) Y Spanish
Landfill decision 2003/33
Incineration directive 76/00 Royal Decree 653/2003 on Incineration of Waste 30 May 2003 (BOE 14 June, 2003) Y Spanish

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3. National policies on waste

Disposal strategies:
The NWMP foresees to incinerate 9% of MSW by 2001 and 17.7% by 2006. All uncontrolled landfills to be closed by 2006

Bio-waste management and reduction:
BMW is defined in the National Decree (1481/2001) as any waste capable of anaerobic/aerobic degradation and that are contained inside municipal (or urban) waste; hence the materials considered are:

The Plan indicates a general target for BMW recycling (composting) by treating a minimum 40% by 2001 and 50% by 2006 of the total arising; the Plan intends to enhance energetically valorisation by means of anaerobic digestion of 2% of BMW by 2001 and 5% by 2006.
The National Plan on Waste states a general target for green waste to be separately collected and recycled: 50% by 2002 and 80% by 2006. Food waste should be separately colleted starting from big producers (restaurants, canteens, etc)
The National strategy for strategy for the reduction of biodegradable waste going to landfills pursuant to Article 5(1) of the EU Directive 1999/31/CE is currently in the development stage.
Regarding the transposition of the Landfill Directive, the NPWM states that by 2006 all landfill sites will be managed according to the requirements of the EU Directive, estimating that 33.1% of MSW will be eliminated via landfilling.

Packaging waste management and reduction:
Definite targets:

If this latter figure is not reached, taxes will be applied. There are choices between deposit self-compliance and membership of a compliance scheme. Responsibility is on the last holders/ owners of commercial/ industrial waste. They can either have a take-back system or become a member of a compliance scheme. At regional and central level, financial or fiscal measures can be put in place to promote the packaging that responds to the Prevention Plan.
The packaging companies that want to belong to Ecoembes's IMS in order to comply with the law, enter into a Membership Contract and fill in an annual return regarding the packing put on the Spanish market, from which their contribution to the IMS is deducted. Ecoembes uses these contributions to finance the extra-cost that the selective collection, transport, classification and subsequent recycling and recovery of the packaging waste means to the local authorities.
Packaging managed by ECOEMBES

Regional approaches:
The Region Catalunja adopted in 2001 the Catalan Municipal Waste Management Programme (PROGREMIC) which contains also a Regional Strategy for BMW management (Catalan Decree 1/1997); there is a general obligation of bio-waste separate collection (mostly food waste) for all municipalities exceeding 5000 inhabitants. The development of source-separation schemes was further fostered in 2003 by granting about EUR 2.8 Mio to 47 municipal and "supra-municipal" authorities to allow investments for buckets, biodegradable bags, containers, information campaigns and other activities strictly linked to encouraging separate collection of bio-waste, such as the realisation of organic waste transfer points or the equipment with specific vehicles for separate collection. 144 municipalities introduced separate collection schemes for bio-waste by 2003, collecting about 150.336 t of materials. About 2.2 x 10^6 inhabitants are connected to the separate collection scheme. At the end of 2003, the state of the infrastructure to recover organic matter was as follows: 15 plants for composting, 1 for anaerobic digestion; 7 plants are currently under construction.
In addition to this, the last Municipal Waste Management Programme in Catalunya (2001-2006) sets objectives for separate collection for each of the fractions of MSW. Regarding bio-waste, the objective for separate collection is 40% - of total bio-waste produced - by the end of 2003, and 55% by the end of 2006.
The Catalan Government is actually working in the direction of implementing the law on waste and the municipal waste management programme (PROGREMIC) in order to:

  1. extend the obligation of bio-waste separate collection to all municipality of Catalunya (not only those municipality with more than 5000 inhabitants)
  2. to make pre-treatment of residual waste compulsory in order to reduce the amount (and to improve the quality) of the residual/rest waste before it goes to landfill (or to incineration)
  3. improve the management of landfills, trough the disposal of stabilized residual/rest waste by means of plastic packs.
  4. extend the landfill tax (10 EUR/T) to incineration tax (5 EUR/T) and to debris tax (3 EUR/T)

The Integrated Urban Waste Management Plan for Gipuzkoa (PIGRUG in its Spanish initials) lays the groundwork for developing sustainable urban waste management in the Bask Region. The Plan aims to significantly increase composting from the current level of 1500 tonnes/year from green and wood waste to 22,500 tonnes year in 2016. This increase will be achieved through the selective collection and treatment of the organic waste from large-scale producers (markets large shopping centres cafeterias etc). Once these minimisation recycling and composting strategies have been applied it is envisaged that the remaining part of MSW will undergo mechanical biological treatment be used to produce energy or a combination of both techniques.

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4. Instruments

Kind of instrument Landfill tax
Tax rates Taxes for Landfills are not generally implemented.
Values for Madrid are per tonne of waste:
EUR10 Hazardous Waste;
EUR 7 Domestic Waste;
EUR 3 Construction and demolition waste
Average value in Catalonia: EUR 10 per tonne
Kind of instrument Licence fees for packaging
Purpose of instrument At regional and central level, financial or fiscal measures can be put in place to promote that packaging responds to the Prevention Plan.
Waste streams involved/fee Packaging material: - (Tariffs in EUR/kg in 2005 (excl. VAT))
Plastics - 0.191
Paper/cardboard - 0.051
Beverage cartons - 0.156
Steel - 0.051
Aluminium - 0.081
Wood - 0.019
Ceramics - 0.014
Other materials - 0.191
Glass > 500ml - 0.0078 EUR/unit
Glass > 125 ml <= 500 ml - 0.0039 EUR/unit
Glass > <= 125 ml - 0.00293 EUR/unit
Composite materials: That is, packaging made of 2 or more materials, that are originally separate but when they form the packaging are difficult for the final consumer to separate. From 2003 onwards it will always contribute as if it were entirely composed of the majority material.
Source of information Decree Law April, 1997; Decree of Transposition of the Directive, 1998; www.pro-e.org

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5. Data on waste management

Waste generation and treatment in 1000 tonnes
1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Total waste generation - - - - - - - - -
Municipal waste generated* 20065 21135 22174 22436 24479 26513 26634 26586 27581
Municipal waste landfilled 12134 11758 12606 12577 13157 13559 14726 14723 15000
Biodegradable municipal waste generated 11658 - - - - - - - -
Biodegradable waste landfilled - - - - - - 8852 9268 9291
Used tyres generated - - - - - 265 - - -

Source: Eurostat Structural Indicators. * calculated from kg per capita **Eurostat, data reported by member states to the European Commission (late 2005)

Waste generation and treatment in kg per capita
1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Total waste generation - - - - - - - - -
Municipal waste generated 510 536 561 566 615 662 658 649 662
Municipal waste landfilled 308 298 319 317 331 339 364 359 364
Biodegradable municipal waste generated 297 - - - - - - - -
Biodegradable waste landfilled - - - - - - 219 226 223
Used tyres generated - - - - - 6.6 - - -

Source: Eurostat Structural Indicators. *Eurostat, data reported by member states to the European Commission (late 2005)

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6. National legislation on waste (selected)

National regulations Exists or not (Y/N) Reference (if available)
Landfill Y Royal Decree 1481/2001 on Landfill.
Incineration Y Royal Decree 653/2003 on Incineration of Waste.
BMW (Bio-degradable municipal waste) N
Packaging Y Law 11/1997 on Packaging and Packaging Waste.
End-of Life Vehicles / Tyres Y Royal Decree 1383/2002 on Management of End of Life Vehicles.
Waste of electrical and electronic equipment Y Royal Decree 208/2005 on electric and electronic equipment.
Batteries Y Royal Decree 45/1996 and Order of 25 October 2000, on batteries.
Construction/demolition waste N

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7. Competent authorities

This hyperlink will direct you to Competent Authorities on eionet wastebase

8. Bibliography

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