Ile-de-France Region Waste Management Observatory

ORDIF is a department of The Paris Region Urban and Environmental Agency (IAU Île-de-France). It brings together most of the regional waste stakeholders (regional & local authorities, private companies, NGOs, representatives of waste producers…) and has 3 main missions. The first one is to monitor waste prevention and management in the Region, e.g. by producing yearly reports on collection and treatment. Within the second mission, ORDIF focuses also on disseminating waste-related information to its members and regional stakeholders. Furthermore, ORDIF promotes exchanges among its members by organizing frequent conferences about the main challenges linked to waste management.

In order to produce indicators that are accepted by all the regional stakeholders, ORDIF brings together its members in several working groups in charge of the validation of methods, analyses and results issued by the Observatory. The indicators are then used notably for the monitoring of regional waste strategies. ORDIF’s work directly influences both regional and local authorities; its data and indicators are used for the monitoring of the regional plan for waste management and ORDIF works closely with the Paris Region administration on waste prevention and waste management issues.

Waste treatment

The largest incineration plants and non-hazardous waste landfill sites in France are located in the Paris Region. The former are predominantly used to treat residual household waste (3.9 Mt treated in 2014), while the latter chiefly treat residual business waste and household bulky waste (2.4 Mt in 2014). The region also has a good coverage in terms of composting platforms and of sorting centres. These recycling centres produced about 2.3 million tonnes of recovered materials.

Although capacities are well below those of incineration and landfill, agricultural anaerobic digestion is currently the process which is being developed the most, benefiting from a support plan from the Regional Council and from mandatory selective collection and recovery of bio-waste for large food waste producers imposed nationally. Indeed, businesses must set up compulsory source sorting of bio-waste if they exceed a threshold, lowered to 10 t/y from 2016 onwards. In 2025, this obligation will apply to everyone in France, including households, as foreseen by the Energy Transition Law.

Treated waste from the Paris Region enabled the production of 3,847 thermal GWh injected into public or industrial heat networks, 907 electric GWh, and 11 GWh of gas.

Inert waste is mostly sent to dedicated landfills, of which there were 19 operational in the Region in 2015, with an additional 427,000 t sent to non-hazardous waste landfills for landscaping in 2014.

Finally, an estimated 1,014,250 tonnes of hazardous waste were collected and treated in the Region in 2013.


Municipal waste

In 2014, 5.57 million tonnes, or an average of 464 kg/inh. of municipal waste was collected, 2/3 of which is residual waste. Characterisation studies reveal that 2 million tonnes of recyclables can still be found in residual waste, with the bulk of this being bio-waste, paper and cardboard.

Since 2000, a slight decline in the amounts collected has been observed (-43 kg/inh.). This is mainly due to the drop of residual waste: -104 kg/inh. between 2000 and 2014, while sorted waste quantities have been increasing. Amounts of source-separated waste collected on the kerbside has evolved little since 2005, but lately that collected in Civic Amenity Sites (CAS) has increased slightly. The overall decrease of municipal waste collected can be explained partly by all the prevention actions led by municipalities, such as home composting, or actions to reduce advertising or food waste, and partly by decreased consumption linked to the global financial crisis. In 2014, 60 % of municipal waste went to incineration plants while 28 % went to recycling processes.

In 2014, the Paris Region encompassed 174 permanent Civic Amenity Sites and it plans to reach 300 by 2019. There is currently 1 CAS for every 69,000 inhabitants in the Region, versus 1/14.000 inh. on average nationally. Because of a lack of available land, some municipalities developed a mobile service to provide a simple access to households. Quantities collected in CAS increased from 624,000 t in 2007 to 829,000 t in 2014. 21 sites had a specific container for re-use in 2014, entailing the collection of 206 tonnes. The products collected are then prepared for re-use in local social economy structures.


Climate impact of waste management

Direct greenhouse gas emissions resulting from Paris Region waste management are estimated at 2.3 Mt eq. CO2, which is about 5 % of total direct emissions in the Region. This is mainly the result of CO2 released during incineration and methane from landfills, two major treatment options in the Region.

Selective collection of recyclables has a positive carbon footprint, linked to avoided emissions as secondary (recycled), rather than primary raw materials are used. An increase in selective collection therefore can have a double positive impact: reducing emissions produced during the treatment of residual waste, and increasing avoided emissions thanks to recycling.


Economic activity waste

Economic activity waste includes all waste that does not originate from households, produced by both private and public institutions of all sizes. It is collected by private means mostly, but also partly by public utilities as economic activity waste similar to household waste. Out of the 6 million tonnes generated (industrial, commercial, and from services), about a third is mixed waste.

A recent survey on paper and cardboard waste from businesses revealed that over 820,000 tonnes were collected by recyclers in 2012, of which 770,000 tonnes were sorted in 42 facilities. As of 1 July 2016, government administrative buildings with over 20 employees will have to source-separate office paper. For private buildings, the threshold is over 100 employees, then 50 in 2017 and 20 in 2018.



ORDIF took part in the monitoring of waste produced during the COP21. Out of 16,000 t of material mobilized for the event (not including water), 14,900 tonnes were reused, including 14,500 t by developers, 20 t of plants which have been replanted, 7 t of uneaten food distributed to 15,000 beneficiaries, and 3 t of blank paper donated to nearby schools. 1,000 t of waste were collected, in 7 main streams: packaging, glass, paper, unrecoverable residual waste, recoverable mixed waste, bulky waste, and wood. 70 % of this waste was recycled.


Employment and costs

The waste management sector is the largest provider of jobs among green economy activities, employing about 24,000 people in the Paris Region. The workforce has increased significantly since the early 90’s, in line with developments in the waste sector: multiplying separate waste collection systems, construction and modernisation of facilities for waste collection and treatment.

Modernization of the sector has also had an impact on the amount of taxpayer contributions: the tax for the removal of household waste, the main tax used by local authorities to fund waste management, has increased annually by an average of 5 % since 2000. In 2013, it raised 1,500 M€ in the region.

The average costs borne by public authorities (net revenues) amounts to 94 € per inhabitant, all included (amount observed outside of Paris, in the rest of the Region). 2/3 of this amount are assigned to residual household waste management. The two other main cost items are selective collection of paper and packaging (12 % of the cost) and CAS management (8 %).


Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR)

For over 20 years now Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) has introduced a polluter-pays principle within the waste sector, by transferring the responsibility of waste management from municipalities to producers. EPR is a way to convince producers to reduce their products’ environmental footprint by enhancing prevention and eco-design through eco-modulated taxes, and to integrate all the waste collection and treatment costs into production costs. France has set 18 different EPR schemes so far, the highest number in Europe. These schemes cover 8 % of regional waste arisings and made up 76 % of selective waste collection in 2014. In 2017, a new EPR scheme for ships will be implemented.


European projects

Regions for Recycling (R4R) defined a common method to compare recycling performances in a consistent way: DREC, for Destination RECycling. It encompasses all homogeneous waste fractions sent to recycling, both separated at the source and in sorting centres. Sorting residues are included in the “residual” fraction. Comparisons among the 13 R4R partners show important discrepancies with DREC rates going from 10 % in Attica to 75 % in the Province of Styria, while the Paris Region’s DREC rate is about 20 %

Bin2Grid aims to promote segregated collection of bio-waste as an energy source, its conversion to biogas, followed by an upgrading to biomethane, and the use of the latter in an associated network of filling stations in 4 target cities: Zagreb, Skopje, Malaga, and Paris. Project partners will define strategies for establishing an efficient compilation of food and beverage waste collection methods and practices, based on the identification of European best practices.

Launched in June 2016, URBAN-WASTE – Urban strategies for Waste Management in Tourist Cities – will endeavour to support policy makers in addressing the challenges of booming tourism in European cities, including high levels of unsustainable resource consumption and waste production. This project aims to help develop strategies aimed at reducing the amount of municipal waste production as well as strategies to further develop re-use, recycling, collection and disposal of waste.







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Île-de-France Region Waste Managment Observatory
15 rue Falguière
75740 Paris Cedex 15 - FRANCE
Phone: +33 (0)1 77 49 75 20

Contact : 

15 rue Falguière
75740 Paris Cedex 15 - FRANCE