The eighteenth edition of the special waste report was published by ISPRA (Higher Institute for Environmental Protection and Research). Special waste is produced by public bodies and companies: the report therefore does not take into account urban waste (of domestic origin), but only those produced by economic activities.
The 2019 edition of the report refers to the 2017 data collected by the Waste Register through the annual MUD declarations, to which the ISPRA estimates of the production of special waste are added for the sectors not required in the declaration (medical cabinets, agricultural companies and initial producers of non-hazardous waste under 10 employees).
The report indicates positive data: the growth in the total quantity of waste produced is modest (+ 3% compared to 2016) and due largely to non-hazardous waste (+ 3.1%, compared to + 0.6% of hazardous waste). Avoiding or reducing waste production is at the top of the scale of sustainability priorities.
The best figure is marked by the growth in material recycling (+ 7.7%), accompanied by a decrease (- 8.4%) in disposal, which includes all the "definitive" operations (landfill, incineration, etc.) on the non-recyclable waste, in particular on residues produced by waste treatment operations. Recovery is growing and what is being "thrown away" forever is decreasing. This what fuels all the problems of pollution, land use and population opposition caused by landfills. The increase in recovered materials can feed the virtuous circle of the circular economy, where waste becomes a resource and is reintroduced into the production cycle.