In today’s world, we have all become more aware of environmental concerns than ever before. We are facing a rapidly growing population and rapid urbanization all over the world which has led to the production of an unimaginable global waste that will soon suffocate our planet. According to a report published by the World’s Bank, the amount of annual global waste will soon reach terrifying numbers as it is expected to increase by 70 percent on current levels by the year 2050.
Bad waste management, in combination with heavy pollution and waste of natural resources, will soon lead to the destruction of your natural habitat on planet Earth. We have already been able to notice the changes our environment has suffered because of reckless human actions. The world’s garbage management has led to imminent environmental concerns for the ocean life, climate change, and poor quality of breathable air. Therefore, reducing global waste production and recycling have become two of the priorities of countries from all around the world.
Developing countries still lack national recycling policies that can reduce the impact they have on our planet. However, some countries have decided to implement sustainable waste management strategies and have succeeded to become the most environmentally friendly countries in the world.
Finland is known as the eco-friendliest country from all around the world. With a return rate for refillable glass bottles of almost 100 percent and recovery rated of 96 percent for aluminum beverage cans, Finland wins the game of recycling waste.
The country’s infrastructure for recycling household wastes is extremely good, especially in the urban areas. Both apartment blocks and housing cooperatives, as well as supermarkets, provide the citizens with shared collection points where they can dispose of their metal, glass, paper, and organic waste.
Moreover, apart from the stunning waste management practices, Finland has already gained the ability to produce nearly two-thirds of the needed electricity from renewable or nuclear power sources.Iceland
Following close behind Finland, Iceland is also one of the most environmentally-friendly countries from all around the world. When it comes to waste management and recycling, Iceland also has an effective system put in place.
Iceland has managed to develop an effective waste management system thanks to a different perspective of seeing waste. Instead of perceiving waste as garbage, the country focuses mostly on rethinking waste and transforming it into new products. In terms of residential waste, the country provides its citizens with different types of bins where they can throw away paper, plastic, and ordinary household waste. Moreover, there is a number of waste drop off centers where the citizens can bring their waste.
Waste management in Iceland has gradually become more and more efficient thanks to the strict laws and regulations that encourage the inhabitants of the country to be more mindful of where and how they dispose of their waste of all types.Sweden
While some countries still struggle with poor waste management systems and overfilled landfills, Sweden is known to be so good at the recycling game that it has run out of rubbish. In Sweden, up to 50% of household waste is turned into energy. Moreover, the country relies on a strong culture of circular economy in which they produce and use products that can be reused.
The inhabitants of Sweden have also stepped into the initiative of taking better care of their country. As consumers, they have changed their behaviors into more sustainable ones and it seems that there are good numbers that attest this. According the Swedish Waste Management Association who posted a report from 2017, up to 69 percent of all packaging and 85 percent of bottles and cans have been recycled completely.Denmark
Denmark is famous for being the country with the happiest inhabitants. And, it shouldn’t come as a surprise, that its title has been gained primarily for its eco-friendly practices and ability to provide its inhabitants with a healthy and clean environment.
The Danes have also brought a huge contribution to the title their country has. They have started cycling as the primary mean of transport in urban areas, they are very considerate about recycling, and have adapted to a number of initiatives to reduce energy consumption and water waste. One of the most famous ways Denmark achieved the title of one of the eco-friendliest countries is its ability to transform waste burning in power for the Danish homes.
Similar to Iceland, Denmark has also changed the way it looks at waste. Instead of throwing waste in landfills, Denmark has a very effective recycling system that also contributes to transforming waste into new products. Moreover, a number of companies in Denmark have also adopted green business practices to reduce their waste production and manage it more efficiently. Using waste compacting machines, also known as waste compactors in Australia, companies in Denmark significantly reduce their impact on the environment.Germany
Waste management in Germany has rapidly evolved into a large and powerful economic sector in the past several years. Germany has a recycling rate of 62% and its water management system relies on putting the responsibility of managing, recovering and disposing of waste in the hands of the producers. Consumers in Germany are also active in helping with keeping the country clean and recycling their waste. They rely on a strong culture that implies returning bottles to the stores to the recycling machines.Japan
Japan has a bad reputation when it comes to the air pollution of the country. Its economic growth has come with a huge price paid by its citizens because the atmosphere in the urban areas has been heavily polluted because of the industrial pollutants. However, despite the inability to reduce pollution levels to an acceptable level, the country is very strict when it comes to waste management and recycling.
The country has made recycling part of its circular economy. It has been reported that the country’s recycling rate for PET has been above 90% in 2012 and 98% for metal. the country’s recycling system relies on recycling bins in urban areas, trash sorting requirements, and collection schedules. Also known as a technology-driven country, Japan takes advantage of its technological innovations in their waste management practices using robots, AI, and waste machines such as compactors to recycle and recover material from waste.
Bad waste management is a global problem that most countries face. With an increasing population and the projected spikes in waste production make all countries fear that they will face a waste crisis. However, since the countries mentioned above have all succeeded in implementing good waste management practices, all other countries can follow their example and reduce their impact on our planet.