National Waste Management Plan

Mission of the environmental policy

The official mission of the Dutch environmental policy is:

‘creation of the conditions under which the quality of the environment can be maintained and improved and, as a consequence, contribute to sustainable development'.

This leads to the following objectives for the waste policy:

  • Restricting the creation of waste
  • Restricting the burden of production chains on the environment
  • Optimisation of the use of waste in a circular economy


LAP3 is the Dutch acronym for the third National Waste Management Plan (NWMP3). The plan may be amended from time to time in response to developments. For that reason, the first change to LAP3 / NWMP3 came into effect on 19 July 2019. The second change/first part became into effect 2 March 2021, the second change/second part 1 Januari 2024.

The process for changing the NWMP is in accordance with a statutory procedure that allows for public consultation.

NWMP as an instrument for the circular economy

The Netherlands attaches great importance to the transition to a circular economy. This offers economic opportunities for the Netherlands, makes the Netherlands less dependent on the import of scarce raw materials and  contributes to a cleaner environment. This section addresses the link between NWMP3 and the policy relating to the circular economy.

What is the circular economy?

In a circular economy, as few primary raw materials as possible are used and, where new ones are required, they must be extracted in a sustainable manner. Other adverse effects to the social and physical living environment and to public health are prevented. Products and materials are designed in such a way that they can be re-used with as little loss of value as possible, and without any damage to the environment.

The NWMP3 consists of a policy framework and sector plans.

Some sections have been translated. Please note this translation is only aimed to be helpful in having an insight in Dutch policy. Although professionally translated, there may be slightly different interpretations due to translation, therefore no rights can be derived from it. Also please note that this are the original NWMP3 (2027-2029) texts. Changes made in recent years (as from 2019) haven't been translated.

Policy framework

The policy framework describes the national waste prevention and waste management policy, the objective of the waste policy,  and definitions. It also provides insight into scenarios, monitoring and enforcement.

Available in English are sections:

  • A3 Objectives (pdf, 396 kB): This section explains what Dutch environmental and waste objectives mean in terms of waste policy.
  • A6 International (pdf, 463 kB): This section describes the international framework with which the Netherlands has to contend in relation to waste management. It addresses international collaboration and co-ordination.

  • B6 Difference between waste and non-waste material (pdf, 616 kB)
    The NWMP applies to waste materials. But a question that is being asked increasingly frequently (at both national and international level) is whether a particular material is waste. Section B6 tackles the definition of waste materials and the use of this definition in practice.

Sector plans

The sector plans flesh out the policy framework for specific categories of waste. Each sector plan describes the policy for the relevant waste as well as aspects relating to licensing and imports and exports.

The essence of each sector plan is the ‘minimum standard’, which gives an indication of how specific waste material may be processed. By means of a system of permits, this ensures that waste is not processed to a lower standard than is desirable. Where the minimum standard is, for instance, recycling, waste of this kind may not be incinerated.

Sector plans are available in Dutch only. Currently there are 85 sector plans: overview of sector plans (Dutch).

Status and scope

The National Waste Management Plan covers all waste to which the Environmental Management Act applies. This Act stipulates all authorities must observe the NWMP.

Legal status

Pursuant to the Environmental Management Act, the Minister for Infrastructure and Water Management is required to draw up a waste management plan at least once every six years. The plan covers the main points of policy on waste management, circular economy, details of the main aspects for individual types of waste and the policy on the import and export of waste. The National Waste Management Plan also complies with the obligation, derived from various EU directives, to formulate explicit policy or devise certain programs relating to the various aspects of waste management.


The National Waste Management Plan is intended for waste which is subject to the Environmental Management Act. The following waste does not or only partly fall under the National Waste Management Plan:


All authorities must take into account the National Waste Management Plan when dealing with aspects of waste management.

Central government must take into account environmental aspects when making policy plans and issuing decisions. In the case of waste management, the NWMP is the frame of reference. The NWMP is the yardstick for issuing:

  • collection permits for certain categories of (hazardous) waste,
  • decisions on notifications of the proposed import, export and transshipment of waste based on the EU Waste Shipments Regulation.

For the provincial and municipal authorities and water quality managers the NWMP is also the yardstick against which they check all authorizations granted by virtue of the Environmental Management Act, involving waste. This not only applies to permits for waste management establishments, but also to authorizations for companies where there is waste.

Progress report

A report is published on the progress being made with the various activities:

Nederlands Afval in Cijfers. This report is only available in Dutch.


If you have any questions about the National Waste Management Plan and are unable to find the information on this site, please contact the Information desk.