Factors Affecting Waste Recycling Habits in Latvia - Results From an Online Survey

Ulla Milbreta, Anna Zakareviča, Jūlija Gušča

Abstract


While waste sorting is compulsory within the European Union, not all households in Latvia have the access to the waste sorting bins nor wish to recycle their household waste even if the bins are available. Despite the fact that several surveys have been conducted concluding that the recycling rates in Latvia are improving with every year, it is still not clear what are the factors that determine waste sorting and sustainable consumption habits in Latvia. Therefore, the goal of this study was to identify factors that could be seen as predeterminants for waste sorting and sustainable consumption habits among the citizens of Latvia. Prior to the survey, an extensive literature search was made to identify and understand what are the most prominent socio-demographic and other factors that could affect waste sorting, plastic consumption, or sustainable behaviour habits. Literature findings revealed a heterogeneity of factors that could not be fully attributed nor classified based on the region of the country, some cultural aspects, the customs, or specific socio-demographic factors, indicating that the sustainable behaviour was mostly country -specific, and, therefore, could not be generalised to all the countries. Based on these findings an online survey was made. It was conducted for a one month period between the end of January and the end of February 2024. The data from different age groups of citizens of Latvia were collected. The results of the survey should shed a light on the factors that could be seen as determinants for waste sorting and sustainable consumption habits (or lack of them) among the inhabitants of Latvia. These results could help to develop better communication strategies based on the survey results to help to improve recycling indicators in Latvia.


Keywords:

Barriers; behaviour; socio-demographic factors; sustainable consumption

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DOI: 10.7250/%x

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Institute of Energy Systems and Environment
Riga Technical University
Azenes iela 12/1, Riga, LV-1048, Latvia
Email: ect@rtu.lv
Phone: +37167089923