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OECD Environmental Performance Reviews: Latvia 2019

image of OECD Environmental Performance Reviews: Latvia 2019

Latvia has come a long way in improving its environmental performance and the well-being of the population. Large amounts of investment have helped increase the use of renewables, improve energy efficiency of homes, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and extend access to water and waste services. However, convergence with more advanced OECD economies is far from being accomplished. Forestry and agriculture play a key economic role, but exert increasing pressures on biodiversity. Mainstreaming biodiversity considerations into economic development policies should be a priority. Accelerating the transition towards a low-carbon and circular economy will require major investment in sustainable infrastructure, more waste prevention and recycling and stronger economic instruments.

This is the first Environmental Performance Review of Latvia. It evaluates progress towards sustainable development and green growth, with special features on waste and circular economy, and biodiversity conservation and sustainable use.

English Latvian

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Waste, material management and circular economy

Latvia has progressed with recovery and recycling, and the use of economic instruments to divert waste from landfilling. However, waste and materials are not yet managed cost‑effectively and policy implementation is not sufficiently co‑ordinated. Moving towards a circular economy will require further improving basic waste management, strengthening the use of economic instruments and improving performance in extended producer responsibility systems. This chapter gives an overview of trends in material use and waste generation and of related policies. It reviews the effectiveness of the instruments used to encourage waste reduction and recycling and to reduce landfilling. It identifies implementation gaps and opportunities in moving towards a circular economy.

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