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European survey Wasteful Swiss among top recyclers

Waste bins in Swiss street

A familiar sight in Switzerland: waste bins of different colours encouraging consumers to separate the household rubbish. 


Swiss consumers generate an increasing amount of rubbish, but they remain the recycling champions of Europe.

The European Union’s statistics office (Eurostatexternal link) says the Swiss threw away an average 706 kilogrammes of rubbish per person in 2017 – making the country the third biggest municipal waste producer behind Denmark and Norway.

The Swiss figure is in line with data provided by the Federal Environment Officeexternal link, according to the Keystone-SDA news agency.

However, Switzerland also remains the champion in recycling, latest official EU figures show.

The Swiss lead the table with 217 kilogrammes per capita recycled in 2017, ahead of Norway and Denmark with 216 kilogrammes and 213 kilogrammes respectively.

The EU average level of waste generation was 487kg, while the average recycling rate was 81kg.

When it comes to composting, the Swiss come second behind neighbouring Austria but ahead of Denmark.

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