The United Kingdom is the eighth-most efficient EU country when it comes to waste management, according to a new study.

A report published by the European Commission – which ranks all 27 EU countries on 18 different waste management standards – has named Austria and The Netherlands as the most efficient countries.

Researchers scored each country using a green flag, yellow flag or red flag for each of the 18 criteria, with a green flag being two points and a yellow flag one point. According to, the UK was awarded ten green flags, seven yellow flags and a solitary red flag, giving them 32 points in total.

They were awarded a green flag for the total amount of municipal waste being recycled and another for the development of recycling schemes. This indicates that Great Britain is making great use of its recycling bins.

The UK was awarded its red flag due to there currently being no restrictions on what can be placed in landfills.

Denmark, Germany and Sweden, Belgium and Luxembourg all currently rank above the UK for waste management efficiency, whilst Greece is placed at the bottom of the league table – with 16 red flags.

According to, only a third of EU countries received a green flag for the amount of waste being recycled.

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