Chapter 10: Waste management beyond the Italian north-south divide: spatial analyses of geographical, economic and institutional dimensions
Many advanced countries have been experiencing crises in their waste systems, characterised by hot spots for lack of disposal capacities and deficiencies within separated waste collection and recovery, resulting in detrimental effects on human health, environmental quality, and the general quality of public life in urban settings. As has been clarified by theoretical and empirical investigations within the 'economics of waste' (Kinnaman 2006, addresses key issues in waste management and urban waste recycling that are thematically relevant in our analysis, as do key works such as Fullerton and Kinnaman 1995, Shinkuma and Managi 2011, Pearce and Brisson 1995, Mazzanti and Montini 2008, among others), these crises appear to be mainly driven by policy failure, a lack of new and diversified investments in waste management and inadequate disposal facilities. The European Environment Agency has analysed the extent to which EU countries have complied with EU policies (EEA 2009). Bad waste management and disposal performances are often related to a high use of landfilling and a low amount of separated recycling collection. The latter is a key driver for improving both recovery (composting, material recovery) and disposal (incineration, landfilling), and is potentially linked to energy recovery. Waste management policies are behind the success of waste systems, which are otherwise almost totally driven by 'social capital' and market forces. These may or may not be sufficient and effective in determining successful waste management, namely compliance with targets determined by sanitary issues and/or cost-benefit economic considerations which include externalities accounting.
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