Waste oils statistics for Ireland

EPA Circular Economy and Waste Statistics data release June 2023. Data reference year 2021.

Treatment of waste oils

In 2021, approximately 28,000 tonnes (t) of oils were placed on the market in Ireland. 

Almost 19,000 t of waste oils were separately collected in 2021 and, once adjusted for imports and exports, over 21,000 t of waste oils were finally treated and used for energy recovery in Ireland.

The quantities of oils placed on the market in Ireland in 2020 and 2021 are shown below. This time series will develop over time as this is a new reporting requirement.

Bar chart showing the amount of waste oils placed on the market in 2020 and 2021



The Waste Framework Directive requires Member States to report on oils and waste oils for each calendar year. This is a new reporting obligation which is still in development at EU and IE level.

The categories of waste oils that come within the scope of this reporting include any mineral or synthetic lubrication or industrial oils which have become unfit for the use for which they were originally intended. Examples include used combustion engine oils and gearbox oils, lubricating oils, oils for turbines, and hydraulic oils. 

When used, oils are burned up and gain water. Oil tonnages placed on the market are therefore usually greater than separately collected amounts of waste oil.

Pre-treatment of separately collected waste oil in Ireland removes water, resulting in waste oil that can be used for energy recovery. In 2021, 14,847 (t) of waste oil was made available for energy recovery in Ireland and 1,257 (t) was made available for energy recovery abroad.

Waste oils are hazardous waste and therefore the proper management of this waste is crucial to ensure that damage to the environment is prevented and there is no risk to water, soil, air, plants, or animals.

bar graph showing the amount of waste oils that were placed on the market, collected and finally treated in 2021