A waste incinerator, in Toulouse, September 14, 2022. CHARLY TRIBALLEAU / AFP “Insufficiently coordinated” actors, a “still failing” monitoring system and “difficult to read and too weak incentive” funding: in a report published on Tuesday 27 September, the Court of Auditors scrutinizes public policies for the management of household waste. A treatment whose cost for the community has been soaring for twenty years with an annual increase of 4.3%. In summary, France is a champion in enacting laws with ambitious goals but is unable to keep them. On all the indicators (quantity of waste produced, recycling, disposal, etc.), it is both far behind its objectives and very far from the performance of the most advanced States such as Germany, Austria, the – Netherlands or Scandinavian countries. France aims to reduce its production of household waste by 15% (compared to 2010 levels) to reach 500 kg per inhabitant per year by 2030. It is currently very far from this. With 583 kg in 2019 (latest data available), the volume of household waste has stagnated at a “high level” for ten years. Worse, after a phase of decline, the trend has been rising again since 2015. At the same time, our Dutch (511 kg) and Belgian (490 kg) neighbors have reduced their production by 15% and 10% respectively in one year. decade and the Swedish European champions have succeeded in limiting their waste to 443 kg per inhabitant. What does not work in France? Almost everything. Prevention first. “Official priority”, the reduction of waste production is the “poor relation” of waste management, note the magistrates. Local authorities devote only 1% of the total cost of the public waste management service to it and this ratio has changed little since 2015. Prevention is also considered “marginal” in the actions of eco-organizations. As for companies, “they cannot be exonerated from their responsibility by the sole financial contribution to eco-organizations”. The Court of Auditors invites them to reduce the materials placed on the market, starting with packaging, recalling that “the best waste is that which is not produced”. Delay in the recovery of bio-waste Once this assumption is made, what becomes of our waste? Contrary to the majority of European countries, France continues to incinerate ever more waste: approximately 35% of waste, against less than 30% for the European average. According to 2018 data, 44% is recycled. Very far, here too, from the objective set by law: 55% in 2020 and 65% in 2025. France is doing less well than the European Union average (47%) and remains behind Austria (58%) or Germany (67%). “There is still a significant way to go”, comment the rapporteurs. The abyss is even greater for the recycling of plastics: France is stagnating around 26% when the average of the twenty-seven EU countries is above 40% and the Netherlands and Austria are flirting with the 50%. The ambition of the anti-waste law for a circular economy is to aim for 100% recycling of single-use plastic packaging by 2025. You have 32.78% of this article left to read. The following is for subscribers only.