EU council passes legislative package / Landfilling to be phased out by 2030 / BPF releases vision document
Following approval of the plans by the European Parliament in April, the European Council has now given its blessing to the legislative package that establishes rules for waste management and legally binding targets for recycling (see of 24.04.2018). With this, the new rules will take effect 20 days after its publication in the EU’s Official Journal.

Targets of the circular economy package include a commitment to reduce municipal solid waste by 55% up to 2025, by 60% up to 2030 and by 65% up to 2035. After 2035, the share of municipal waste sent to landfill must not exceed 10%. Additionally, by 2023 member states will have to collect biowaste separately if it is not composted on-site, and by 2025 separately collect textiles and hazardous waste from households. All of this is in addition to the existing separate collection of plastics as well as paper, cardboard, glass and metals.

A new component is the landfill reduction target. This sets minimum requirements for extended producer responsibility schemes for products such as packaging, for which a recycling target of 65% is foreseen by 2025 and of 70% by 2030. Across the waste spectrum, by 2030 the law obliges all EU countries to ensure that all waste suitable for recycling or other recovery, in particular in municipal waste, does not go to landfill. What’s more, manufacturers of products covered by the schemes must take responsibility for their proper disposal as well as contribute to the cost. The waste package also encourages the use of recyclable and reusable packaging.

Across the EU, the plastics industry is already working on compliance. The British Plastics Federation (BPF, London;, for example, has launched “Plastics: A Vision for a Circular Economy”, a document outlining key proposals for driving innovation and improving recycling rates. The federation said it will work to help the UK government implement its recently introduced industrial strategy, in particular to ensure that 100% of plastic packaging and single-use items are reused, recycled or recovered by 2030 (see of 20.03.2018).

Future EU legislation will address the problems of “legacy substances” found in recycled plastic products, or issues related to plasticisers. Guidelines are expected to be presented next year.

BPF's “Plastics: A Vision for a Circular Economy” as a PDF file
25.05.2018 [239804-0]
Published on 25.05.2018
Kreislaufwirtschaft: EU-Parlament verabschiedet AbfallrichtlinienGerman version of this article...

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