Denmark was the worst offender with around 777kg, followed by Malta (647), Cyprus (640) and Germany (626). Romania recorded the lowest rate at 261 kg per person. The report noted there may be data variations because of the different ways in which municipal waste differs among member states.
Figures are improving, however. In 2002, the average waste thrown away peaked at 527kg.
In Luxembourg, the figure has fluctuated since 2010, between the highest at 679kg (2010) and lowest at 607 (recorded in 2015).
What about recycling?
Across the EU in 2016, just under a third of waste was recycled, 27% was incinerated, a quarter ended up in landfill and 17% was composted. In Luxembourg, 29% of waste was recycled, a fifth composted and a third incinerated. Among the key recycling projects in the country are the collection system operated by Valorlux, which launched its blue bags in 1997. In 2016, it recycled more than 71% of the packaging produced by its member.
Luxembourg introduced a cost for purchasing plastic bags in supermarkets to encourage people to reuse bags. From 31 December 2025, its goal is to reduce annual plastic bag consumption to 40 bags per person. It is estimated that on average people used 140 plastic bags in 2017.