Norms and regulations

Waste: higher taxes, more waste sorting

Questo post è disponibile anche in: Italian

According to the Observatory for prices and tariffs by Cittadinanzattiva, families pay 2% more than in 2014.

In 2015, the average Italian family paid 298 € of waste tax, 2% more compared to the previous year. The tax on waste now has a new name, but its growth trend is always the same. The good news is, waste sorting rates have increased too. This is the situation described by the annual survey of the Observatory for prices and tariffs by Cittadinanzattiva: for the eighth consecutive year, a survey was carried out to study the costs borne by citizens for waste disposal in all provincial capitals. The 2015 survey referred to an average 3-people family with a total gross income of 44,200 € and a property house of 100 sq m. The survey is available online for free with user registration on

The most expensive region seems to be Campania (419 € per year), while Trentino Alto Adige has the lowest taxes (193 €). This region also experienced the biggest reduction of the TARI waste tax (-13% compared to 2014). Basilicata, on the contrary, registered a record growth (+44.8%), in particular in the city of Matera, where the waste disposal tax has been increased to 419 €, against 196 € in 2014 (+114%). A comparison among all provincial capitals reveals that Cremona is the least expensive city (137 € per year), while Reggio Calabria is the most expensive (604 €).

However, waste sorting rates increased too: according to ISPRA, in 2014 the national level of waste sorting was equal to 45.2% (+2.9 compared to 2013), while landfill dumping decreased by 6%, with a rate of 31% in 2014. This field too displays considerable local differences: southern regions sort on average less than one third of the overall waste (31%), central regions have a rate of 40.8% and northern regions 56.7%. The most active regions in this field are Veneto and Trentino Alto Adige, which sort about 67% of their overall waste. The worst results are to be found in Sicily, where the levels of waste sorting are as low as 12.5% (-0.8% compared to 2013). The second last place goes to Calabria, with a waste sorting level of just 18.6% which however has increased by 3.8% compared to the previous year.

“Waste disposal is one of the typical issues that reveal the delays and inefficiency of our national system – commented Tina Napoli, the head of the consumer policy department of Cittadinanzattiva – while it could be an opportunity to set up innovative strategies that involve citizens and institutions in a virtuous cycle to define and share communities and cities where it is really possible to live. Ideally, cities could produce less and less waste while investing in recycling.” And yet, the current cost calculation method doesn’t consider the real amount of waste produced, therefore it doesn’t encourage citizens to change their behaviour. We keep on waiting the constitution of a regulating authority for this sector, although our hopes are quite low by now.”

According to the 2015 Municipal waste report by ISPRA, in 2014 Italy produced 29.7 million tons of municipal waste with an average of 488 kg per capita (+0.2% compared to 2013). 46% of the Italian municipal waste is produced in northern regions, 32% in southern regions and 22% in central regions.

Concerning the waste production per capita, the highest average level can be found in central regions (547 kg), followed by northern regions (496 kg) and southern regions (443 kg). Regional and provincial differences are particularly visible not only in the production and disposal of waste, but also in the tariffs paid by citizens.

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