Hazardous waste (i56)

In 2020, 342 kilograms of hazardous waste per capita were produced in Belgium. To achieve the sustainable development goal by 2030, this figure must be reduced. Between 2004 and 2020, the trend is undetermined (assessment of November 2023).

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Hazardous waste - Belgium and international comparison

kilograms per capita

//: Average Growth Rates

Eurostat (2022), Hazardous waste, env_wasgen, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 26/10/2022).

Definition: hazardous waste is waste that presents risks to health and/or the environment: flammable, explosive, irritating, toxic products... This waste is legally defined by type and industry. The quantity of hazardous waste is the quantity produced by all economic activities (NACE) and by households. The indicator is expressed in kilogrammes per capita. The data come from Eurostat.

Goal: the quantity of hazardous waste must be reduced.

The Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the UN (SDGs) include target 12.4: "By 2020, achieve the environmentally sound management of chemicals and all wastes throughout their life cycle, in accordance with agreed international frameworks, and significantly reduce their release to air, water and soil in order to minimize their adverse impacts on human health and the environment".

International comparison: the amount of municipal waste produced per capita decreases in Belgium, while it is stable in the EU27. Nevertheless, the amount produced in Belgium is above the European average throughout the 2004-2020 period. When Member States are divided into three groups, Belgium is part of the group with the poorest performance in 2020. In that year, Cyprus ranked first with 34 kg/inhabitant and Bulgaria last with 2,012 kg/inhabitant.

UN indicator: the selected indicator corresponds to indicator 12.4.2 - Hazardous waste generated per capita and proportion of hazardous waste treated, by type of treatment.


  • SDGs, Sustainable Development Goals: United Nations (2015), Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Resolution adopted by the General Assembly on 25 September 2015, document A/RES/70/1.

  • Indicators: United Nations (2017), Work of the Statistical Commission pertaining to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Resolution adopted by the General Assembly on 6 July 2017, document A/RES/71/313.

  • UN Sustainable Development: https://sdgs.un.org/ (consulted on 18/01/2023).

  • UN Sustainable Development Goal indicators website: https://unstats.un.org/sdgs/ (consulted on 18/01/2023).

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