Regional Waste Paper Recycling Inventory Study in Turkey and Distribution of Recycling Quality Classes

  • Serhan MADEN
Keywords: Recycling, Regional inventory, Waste management, Waste paper recycling


Although the paper recycling rate in Europe is 70-90% in some countries, its overall average is around 72%. The waste
recycling and recycling rate in Turkey has remained unchanged for the last decade and has been fixed at 50%. This lead to has
unprecedented levels of paper imports. The average amount of imports in the previous years was 50,000 - 60,000 tons/year,
however, this rate has reached 183,000 tons/year in 2014. Approached to 250,000 tons in 2015. And, in 2016, the imported
scrap paper tonnage has reached to 500,000 tons by an almost 80% increase. Therefore, by the end of 2017, import tonnage is
expected to exceed 700-800 thousand tons. While the current paper recycling tonnage of Turkey is 2.6 million tons on average
recently, the industry has reached a size of 3 million tons as a result of capacity increases and new machines introduced.
Together with new investments made and to be made, it is expected to reach a size of 3.2 million tons by the end of 2017.
The paper types were divided into 3 main classes in this study conducted in 2016 under the coordination of Waste Paper
and Recyclers Association (AGED), which is the most important sectoral association representing the scrap paper recycling
factories regarding the meeting paper need of the rapidly growing industry from domestic sources in Turkey. These main classes
were also divided into sub-classes according to the quality classes. In the next stage, each paper factory were asked to enter
the supply information about the quality and amount and region of paper into the inventory system for each month. The data
collected were presented in graphs with factors such as the population of the region, the amount of waste to be produced, and the
number of facilities in the region. As a result, the regional distribution of 2.123.786 tons waste paper was achieved in this study.
In this regard, the highest percentage of waste paper recycling was in the Marmara region by 44%, whereas the lowest recycling
was in the Black Sea region by 1%. Within the context of engineering, these results obtained quantitatively will contribute the
feasibility studies for future investments.