Location: Ljubljana
Country: Slovenia
Contact Information: [email protected]
Website Address: Link

Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, has undergone a remarkable transformation in waste management, evolving from a city with almost no recycling to a leader in sustainability. Over the past two decades, Ljubljana has dramatically increased its waste recycling rate, now processing and separately collecting 68% of its waste with an aim to reach at least 75% by 2025. This achievement, part of its Zero Waste strategy, has earned it the title of European Green Capital in 2016. The city’s approach includes popular household waste recycling centers and a commitment to sustainable practices, positioning Ljubljana as a pioneering example in urban environmental management and a model for cities worldwide striving for a Zero Waste future

Thematic Area – Circular Economy
Thematic Sub-category – Waste management
Type of Actor/Agent – Government, private
Typology of Green Urban Site – Urban areas

Green City Elements:

  • Energy Efficiency in Urban Planning
  • Circular Design
  • 3Rs and 7Rs
  • Paper waste
  • Glass waste
  • Compost
  • Plastic waste
  • Servitization
  • Waste-Resource Marketplaces
  • Conscious Consumption
  • Smart Economy
  • Smart Governance

Engagement and Consultation:
Target Groups – Citizens
Public Engagement – Was applied
Consultation Tools Used – n/a

Resources and Transferability:
Teaching Materials/Resources: Link
Personal Skills Required: Low
Non-discriminatory Principles: Yes
Transferability Potential: High

Innovation and Impact:
Comprehensive approach to transitioning from
minimal recycling to a near-zero waste city. By
implementing a city-wide recycling system that
now processes 68% of its waste, with aspirations
to increase this to 75% by 2025, Ljubljana has set
a new standard in urban sustainability. The impact
of this transformation is profound, both
environmentally and socially. It has significantly
reduced the city’s reliance on landfills, thereby
mitigating environmental pollution and conserving
resources. The project has fostered a strong
culture of environmental responsibility among its
citizens, making Ljubljana a leading example of
how urban areas can effectively combat waste
management challenges and advance towards a
more sustainable future.
Expected Impact High
Level of Scale of Innovation 4

Budget and Analysis:
Budget Spent, Source of Money: Local council
Benefits: Project has reduced landfill waste,
lessening pollution and preserving natural
resources. Cultivated a sense of environmental
stewardship among residents, enhancing
community involvement and awareness regarding
sustainability practices. The efficient recycling
system has lowered the costs associated with
waste disposal and fostered green job
Challenges: Maintaining public participation,
ensuring the ongoing efficiency of the waste
management system, and continuously adapting
to evolving waste types and volumes