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Wasteful lifestyle Swiss rubbish mountain continues to grow

As the Swiss become wealthier, they throw more away

(Keystone)

The amount of rubbish thrown away in Switzerland grew by around 30 kilograms per person to 730kg in 2014. That makes Swiss households and companies the second most wasteful in Europe, behind Denmark (760kg), according to the European Union’s statistical database Eurostat.

While the amount of material ending up in the bin is piling up in Switzerland, it is falling in EU countries, the latest figures show. EU citizens have been throwing away less over the past few years and in 2014 disposed of 475kg per person.

But the amount of rubbish in Switzerland has tripled over the past 25 years and gone up by 350% over the past 50. In recent years, a fall in Swiss waste has only been recorded in 2009 and 2011.

The spiralling waste mountain in the alpine state reached the six million mark threshold in 2014, according to the Federal Office for the Environment. The increase has been blamed not only on the growing population, but also its increasing prosperity. Having more money in their pockets has encouraged people to throw more things away after a shorter time span of use.

Eurostat says that 54% of all Swiss waste is recycled. Germany is the European champion, recycling 64% of its refuse.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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