The European Litter Prevention Association

The Measure of Success

15 January 2016
You can achieve incredible progress if you set a clear goal and find a measure that will drive progress toward that goal. One of the greatest benefits of measurement [is] the ability it gives government leaders to make comparisons across countries and then learn from the best.

— Bill Gates

Several members of the Clean Europe Network have developped litter measurement methods over time and in 2014 the Clean Europe Network set out to test a common way of measuring litter on land across Europe. A first test of the measurement method was carried out in Copenhagen (Denmark), Charleville-Mézières (France), Glasgow (Scotland) and Malmö (Sweden) in 2015.

Existing methods range far and wide in terms of breadth and efficacy, with some preferring the speed and cost-effectiveness of impression-based measurement criteria while others want more objective results and take the longer, more empirical approach. Naturally, the European approach lies somewhere in the middle, benefitting from the speed and efficacy of impression-based measurements all the while keeping a certain amount of objectivity through empirical measurements.

We plan to test our common way of measuring litter throughout our network in 2016. We have also started work on testing a common method for measuring litter in the rivers and seas...

We will soon be on our way to measure progress towards our objective of a Europe free of litter by 2030!