ETC CE Report 2024/5 Textile waste management in Europe's circular economy

21 May 2024

Jana Deckers, Tom Duhoux, Sanna Due

This ETC CE report provides the detailed analysis underpinning the EEA briefing 'Management of used and waste textiles in Europe’s circular economy — European Environment Agency ('.

This report is a continuation of the work on textiles in a circular economy by the European Environment Agency (EEA) and its European Topic Centre on Circular Economy and Resource Use (ETC CE), which started with the 2019 EEA briefing and underpinning ETC CE reports on textiles and the environment in a circular economy and was followed up by other reports and briefings, most recently the 2022 briefings and reports on design for circularity and microplastic from textiles consumption in Europe, the 2023 EEA briefings and ETC CE papers on bio-based textiles and exports of used textiles and the 2024 EEA briefing and ETC CE report on the volumes and destruction of unsold and returned textiles. Together, these reports provide necessary knowledge for the transition to a circular textiles’ economy in the EU. 

The report provides an overview on the current state of textile waste generation, collection systems, treatment capacity and trade, and serves as a preview in terms of the preparatory measures undertaken by the various EEA member countries in response to the forthcoming legislation. It largely builds upon information received from the EEA member countries to a questionnaire sent in June 2023 via the Eionet network to 30 countries and to which 27 countries responded. The questionnaire, developed by the EEA and ETC CE, can be found in Annex 4. A draft of this report was sent for review to the EEA member countries in December 2023. 24 countries2 provided feedback and additional information, which was incorporated into the report.