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Daily News / Market Analysis / Furniture / Statistics / Wood Products / Europe / Global
September 27, 2017

EU furniture industry could boost revenues from cutting waste

EU furniture industry could boost revenues from cutting waste

Improved refurbishment and remanufacture of discarded furniture can trigger up to 157,000 new jobs and save about 6 million tonnes of COequivalent in the EU.

According to a new study made by EEB, which presents a range of policy options to improve waste prevention and resource management in the European furniture sector, this would in turn allow value recovery, economy growth and job creation while saving on resources and the environment.

The EEB is Europe’s largest network of environmental organisations with 140 members in over 30 countries.

The European furniture sector faces a number of challenges due to increasing raw material costs, poor turnover in its workforce and growing competitiveness of low-cost countries such as China.

Despite this, every year 10 million tonnes of furniture are put on the EU market and about the same amount is discarded by businesses and consumers, the majority of which is destined for either landfill or incineration.

Such a waste of valuable materials is a missed opportunity for the economy, but it also undermines efforts to transition to a circular and low-carbon economy.

The refurbishment and remanufacture of furniture guarantees that resources are kept in the economy rather than wasted in landfills or incinerators, which increases the amount of COreleased in the atmosphere.

The most effective measures recommended include a stricter criteria for Ecodesign, including restrictions on the use of chemicals to facilitate reuse, repair and recycling; better business models to cut furniture waste; incentives to take back discarded furniture and mandatory producer responsibility schemes and life-cycle impact information for procurers, repairers and recyclers as well as consumers.

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