Emerging waste streams – Challenges and opportunities

The energy transition is geared to help achieve the climate mitigation ambitions of the EU but should also be in line  with other environmental objectives of the European Green Deal. In this context, establishing models that ensure circularity, i.e. material flows that retain as much value as possible for the longest  time, are paramount.

This project   helps identifying the key challenges that exist for emerging waste streams and suggesting solutions on how to move toward greater circularity for these, including specific research needs and innovation opportunities.

In order to support these objectives, the project activities were:

  • mapping of emerging waste streams from specific renewable energy technologies;
  • gathering of information on these streams' waste management options including, inter alia, waste prevention, preparation for reuse / remanufacturing, recyclability and its barriers (hazardousness, technological barriers, costs);
  • identifying challenges these streams pose for waste management systems and policies (circular economy principles at large, separate collection, treatment capacity and facilities, recycling technologies, waste recycling targets,etc.);
  • analysing opportunities related to these streams and potential solutions to address the identified challenges;
  • discussing necessary changes at the level of key drivers and framework conditions (including at the level of EU policies) in order to realise the identified opportunities and solutions, and which new business models could potentially deliver these solutions.