Development of a guidance document on best practices in the extractive waste management plans – Circular Economy Action

Mining Recycling Waste management Circular economy Economics Waste minimization European Union

The European Commission authorized a study to support the identification of the best practices that contribute to a Circular Economy in extractive waste management plans (EWMPs). This document is the first deliverable of this study, the guidance document focusing on:

  • The prevention or reduction of extractive waste production and its harmfulness;
  • The recovery of extractive waste by means of recycling, reusing or reclaiming such waste.

This guidance is intended as legally non-binding, targeted at competent authorities and extractive industry operators, aiming to integrate the Circular Economy principles into EWMPs, as well as to promote best practices related to Circular Economy that have been collected from submitted EWMPs.

This guidance is structured as follows:

  1. General information: The scope, the approach and the limits of the guidance are presented. In this chapter the reader may find details about the investigation procedure to support the guidance.
  2. Risk based considerations: The purpose of this chapter is to introduce risk-based considerations for the selection of appropriate waste management options, taking account also the principles of Circular Economy.
  3. Methodology to develop EWMPs: This chapter is structured around the key elements that are presented in the Articles 5(2)(a) and 5(2)(b) of the EWD.
  4. Best Practices from EWMPs related to Circular Economy: This chapter presents best practices, highlighting that the extractive industry actively searches for circularity aspects in relation to extractive waste management plans. Every practice that is referred to in this guidance is already applied by some extractive industries; however, it is understood that the applicability of every practice is related to a number of parameters, such as the local environmental conditions, behaviour and characteristics of the extractive waste, the geological background of deposit and the occupational health and safety restrictions.


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