Waste Management in Norway - A study of possible application of "ISO 37120 Sustainable Development in Communities - Indicators for city services and quality of life"
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As a contribution in reaching the UN SDGs and towards a circular economy ISO 37120:2014, Sustainable Development in Communities Indicators for city services and quality of life, has been explored to assess its possibility of being applied as a tool at a local level in Norway. The focus has been on management of solid waste, which is one of the topics in the standard. A triangulation of methods has been used when addressing the research issue, mainly consisting of qualitative strategies. The study indicates that in terms available data at KOSTRA, it is practically possible to apply the solid waste indicators in ISO 37120 at a local level in Norway. When quantifying the indicators, the municipalities Oslo, Bergen, Drammen and Asker were used as examples and illustrations. As the waste management systems in Norway is considered to be satisfying, by a sample of local authorities and local waste management agencies, the solid waste section in the standard alone would not contribute extensively with new insight and knowledge. This result is based on the qualitative questionnaire, as well as interviews. On the other hand, it is assumed that applying the standard will be more beneficial and convenient if all topics are implemented and considered, with the aim of being compared with communities outside Norway - as it is an international standard. Thus, the standard could still be useful and beneficial to apply, especially if all topics is considered and not only the solid waste section. With regard to the transition into a circular economy and reaching the UN SDGs, there are suggested other solid waste performance indicators, as in light of these initiatives the standard is slightly incomplete.