IMPACTPaperRec / Facts & Figures / Definitions

The following definitions are used in all project materials:

Bag Receptable for waste and recyclables; usually plastic bag of 60-120 litres capacity
Biowaste Biodegradable garden and park waste, food and kitchen waste from households, restaurants, caterers and retail premises and comparable waste from food processing plants (art.3.4 of the WFD 2008/98). Also called organic waste.
Bin Receptable for waste and recyclables; equipped with a lid and often on wheels; usually emptied into the collection vehicle. Small bin: 6-240 litres capacity; large bin: 660-1100 litres capacity.
Beverage carton Closed, paper-based composite packaging for liquid food and beverages. On average, it consists of 75% paperboard; the remainder is polymer and in some cases aluminium. Beverage carton can only be recycled in paper mills with specialized processing equipment.
Bring Bank Collection of waste in separate containers, aboveground or underground in close proximity to the end user (usually max. 100-200m distance) and spread in sufficient number across residential areas.
Cardboard (= board) The generic term applied to certain types of paper frequently characterized by their relatively high rigidity. The primary distinction between paper and board is normally based on thickness or “grammage” (the basis weight), though in some instances the distinction will be based on the characteristics and/or end use. For example, some materials of lower grammage, such as certain grades of folding boxboard and corrugated raw materials, are generally referred to as “board”, while other materials of higher grammage, such as certain grades of blotting, felt or drawing paper, are generally referred to as “paper”.
Collection The process of picking up wastes from residences, businesses, or a collection point, loading them into a vehicle, and transporting them to a processing, transfer, or disposal site.
Collection shop Special “shops for secondary raw materials” where residents receive a small financial compensation.
Co-mingled collection Paper and board collected together with other recyclables such as metal, plastics and glass in a different stream than residual waste. Also called multi-material collection.
Composting Biological decomposition of solid organic materials by bacteria, fungi, and other organisms into a soil-like product.
Container Receptable for recyclables; of 1500-4000 litres capacity; often used for collection of recyclables at a bring bank; usually emptied into the collection vehicle.
Data Quantitative and qualitative information gathered from the studies territories.
Digestion plant Anaerobic biological decomposition of solid organic materials into biogas, consisting of methane, and digestate which can be used as fertilizer.
Door-to-Door collection Direct collection from end users’ house, also called kerbside collection
Drop-off system The waste generator takes accumulated waste by foot or by car to a central location and drops it there into containers.
DREC (Destination RECycling) Quantity of collected waste effectively sent to recycling, including: municipal waste streams separated at source & collected separately (one homogeneous waste stream not mixed with other waste streams) with the purpose of recycling; the output from sorting facilities (including bulky waste sorting centres) going directly to facilities for recycling; the output from mechanical biological treatment installation going directly to facilities for recycling.
Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) is an environmental policy principle in which the producer’s responsibility for managing the product and reducing its environmental impact is extended across the whole life cycle of the product – from the selection of materials and design of the product to its end-of-life, especially regarding take-back, recycling and disposal.  EPR can be executed as an individual system (producers organise own systems) or in a collective system (producers decide to collaborate and to exert responsibility collectively through Producer Responsibility Organisation).
External comparison Comparison between different territories
Graphic paper Paper made for printing text or images.
Green waste Biodegradable garden and park waste. Green waste is part of biowaste.
Household waste Waste originating from households (regardless if it is collected door-to-door, through bring banks, recycling yards etc.). Also called domestic waste.
Informal sector Existence of scavengers and waste pickers, picking up recyclables, in urban settlements and landfills.
Internal comparison Comparison of status in year 0 to year X in one territory
Landfill Final disposal of solid waste. Material is placed controlled in a permanent place.
Controlled dump
a planned landfill that incorporates to some extent some of the features of a sanitary landfill: siting with respect to hydrogeological suitability, grading, compaction in some cases, leachate control, partial gas management, regular (not usually daily) cover, access control,
basic record-keeping, and controlled waste picking.
Sanitary landfill
an engineered method of disposing of solid waste on land, in a manner that meets most of the standard specifications, including sound siting, extensive site preparation, proper leachate and gas management and monitoring, compaction, daily and final cover, complete access control, and record-keeping.
Materials recovery facility (MRF) Waste processing facility that combines mechanical sorting with a form of biological treatment such as composting, biodrying or anaerobic digestion. Usually treatment of mixed waste.
Mechanical biological treatment plant Waste processing facility that combines mechanical sorting with a form of biological treatment such as composting, biodrying or anaerobic digestion. Usually treatment of mixed waste.
Municipal waste Waste collected mainly from households. Similar waste in composition which are collected from sources such as small shops, offices, public institutions and selected municipal services are also included. It also includes bulky waste but excludes waste from municipal sewage networks, end-of-life vehicles and municipal construction and demolition waste.   Municipal waste is collected by or on behalf of municipal authorities. In some cases waste collected by the private sector and not on behalf of municipal authorities can be included, for instance similar WEEE collected by retailers. However, similar waste collected by a private company not on behalf of the municipality and through direct contracts with the producers is excluded in order to avoid double accounting.
The exact definition varies in each EU MS. In this project only figures from the municipal waste stream are considered.
Municipal solid waste Waste collected by or on behalf of municipal authorities, or directly by the private sector (business or private non-profit institutions) not on behalf of municipalities. The bulk of the waste stream originates from households, although similar wastes from sources such as commerce, offices, public institutions and selected municipal services are also included. It also includes bulky waste but excludes waste from municipal sewage networks, end-of-life vehicles and municipalconstruction and demolition waste.
Non-paper components According to EN 643, non-paper component is any foreign matter included in the paper and board fraction for recycling which is not a constituent part of the product and can be separated by dry sorting, such as metal, plastic, glass, textiles, wood, sand and building materials, synthetic materials”.
Organic waste Biodegradable waste. Consists of green waste from gardens and parks and of food waste from households.
Packaging paper The type of high-strength paper used for wrapping and packing after conversion to packaging (boxes, bags). This covers both paper and board.
Paper & Board According to EN 643 the term paper and board for recycling only applies for recyclable material. In this project the term paper & board is therefore understood as graphic paper and packaging paper, which can be collected separately for further recycling.
Paper for Recycling Paper and board material collected separately at source for intended use as a secondary raw material for recycling only, also called Recovered Paper*. Paper and board material collected with other recyclables is also called Paper for Recycling after sorting and when intended for use as a secondary raw material for recycling. The term Paper for Recycling originates from the European Standard EN 643.
* Recovered Paper was the standard term in the past but has been largely replaced by the term Paper for Recycling in Europe.
Paper product Any product based on paper and/or board, printed and/or converted to fulfil its designated purpose. It may contain inks, varnishes, lamination, any type of bonding (e.g. glue, staples and threads) and non-paper material, such as product samples
Producer Responsibility Organisation A Producer Responsibility Organisation is an entity set up in collective EPR schemes to implement the EPR principle in the name of all the adhering companies.
Processing Preparing municipal waste and recyclable materials for subsequent use or management, using processes such as baling, magnetic separation, crushing and shredding. The term is also used for separation of mixed waste streams.
Recyclables Materials that can be reprocessed into feedstock for new products. Common examples are paper, cardboard, glass, aluminium and plastic.
Recycling The process of transforming materials into raw materials for manufacturing new products, which may or may not be similar to the original product.
Recycling plant Industrial plant, using secondary raw materials, such as glass, plastics, cardboard, paper, metals etc. for production of new products.
Recycling Rate Recycling rate = % (Tonnage of municipal waste recycled / Tonnage of total municipal waste arising). Recycling generally includes material recycling, composting and anaerobic digestion.
For paper and cardboard the recycling rate is calculated as a percentage with the DREC methodology: Tonnage of paper & cardboard recycled / Tonnage of total paper & cardboard in municipal waste (unless mentioned otherwise). Contrary to the general definition, composting and anaerobic digestion is excluded for paper & cardboard recycling rate.
(Note: Total amount of municipal waste does not include waste that is not collected (littering, house firing, etc.)
Recycling Yard A centralised site authorised by the authorities for the separate collection of household waste with the objective to recycle raw materials. Collection centre for recyclables, often also for other waste fractions and limited in number. Qualified staff available. Also called civic amenity side.
Residual Waste Waste that is not separately collected, also called refuse or mixed waste.
Selective collection Collection of paper and board according to different grades (= different types of paper), often separating graphic paper from other types of paper & board
Separate collection Paper and cardboard is collected separately from residual waste and other recyclables such as plastics, metals, glass, etc. Waste collected through primary separation schemes (separation in households, bring banks, recycling yards, other schemes).
According to EN 643 paper for recycling originating from multi-material collections systems has to be specifically marked. Paper sorted from refuse collections is furthermore not suitable for use in the paper industry.
Sorting station The sorting plant consists of one or more mechanical separation stages (e.g. screen, magnetic separator) and might be even equipped with optical sorting units (VIS and NIR), in most cases combined with manual sorting. If manual sorting serves mainly the purpose of a quality control, it is termed automated sorting.
Waste to energy plant (WTE) Facility that uses solid waste materials (processed or raw) to produce energy. WTE plants include incinerators that produce steam for district heating or industrial use, or that generate electricity.