The rapid population growth, urbanisation and economic development over the last decades has led to an increase in the generation of solid waste across the world. Providing high-quality waste management services is crucial to safeguard public health and protect the environment, but also to support resource efficiency, climate change mitigation and job creation.
The EIB provides long-term financing and technical assistance to public and private waste management projects, both inside the EU and around the world, in line with EU sector policy objectives and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
We give priority to projects that contribute to the circular economy, including waste prevention, reuse and recycling. When financing projects for the treatment of unavoidable, non-recyclable residual wastes, we take into account long-term objectives and targets for both waste reduction and recycling. We also ensure that waste treatment facilities are highly energy and resource efficient.
Projects eligible for financing
We finance projects that demonstrate economic, financial, technical, environmental and social viability, as well as climate resilience. Additionally, projects eligible for EIB financing must be in line with the waste hierarchy and other key waste management principles (prevention, precaution, proximity and the polluter-pays), as well as national and local waste management plans.
In the EU, we focus on waste management infrastructure and equipment needed to comply with relevant EU legal requirements and targets, in particular on investments that contribute to the transition to the circular economy, climate change mitigation and adaptation.
Outside the EU, the EIB supports the introduction and expansion of integrated waste management systems in line with the EU sector policy objectives and SDGs, including infrastructure and equipment for waste collection, sorting, recycling, composting and final disposal, as well as public awareness campaigns for waste prevention.
Economic development, urbanisation and changes associated with our production and consumption patterns generate an increase in solid waste. In the EU, municipal waste alone accounts for 515 kg/year per capita. To help reduce this mass, over the past decade the EIB has financed around EUR 2.8 billion worth of intelligent solid waste management schemes. France and the UK are two EU countries which have success stories to tell.
Bulgaria is progressively putting its waste management system up to best practice standards. By providing technical assistance and a EUR 33 million loan, the European Investment Bank has helped the capital city of Sofia successfully develop an integrated waste management system that turns waste into a resource.