International comparative study of 3R and waste management policy developments

Sakai, S.; Yoshida, H.; Hirai, Y.; Asari, M.; Takigami, H.; Takahashi, S.; Tomoda, K.; Peeler, M.; Wejchert, J.; Schmid-Unterseh, T.; Douvan, A.; Hathaway, R.; Hylander, L.; Fischer, C.; Oh, G.; Jinhui, L.; Chi, N. (2011) Journal of Material Cycles and Waste Management, 13(2): 86-102

Reduce, reuse, and recycle (3R) policies form the basis of waste management and global warming countermeasures globally, so we conducted a comparative study of 3R and waste management policies in the European Union (EU), USA, Korea, Japan, China, and Vietnam. An international workshop for 3R and waste management policymakers was held in Kyoto, Japan, and a bibliographic survey was also conducted to collect data. 3R policies are clearly given priority in the hierarchy of waste management in every country studied. Thermal recovery, which includes power generation from waste heat and methane gas collected from organic waste, is also a priority; this is consistent with the increased use of countermeasures to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In the EU, waste management is characterized by practical and effective 3R policies through the development of realistic regulations and by the policymakers' desire to simplify management systems. The policy ideal in China, however, is the development of a circular economy that targets reductions in the amount and hazardousness of waste. Limits on the number of final disposal sites, strategies for procuring resources, and GHG emission countermeasures are closely linked with 3R policies, and further development of 3R policies in parallel with such issues is expected.


3R; Recycling; Waste management; International comparison, Policy developments