New Targets for the EU’s Circular Economy Package

The European Commission has adopted an ambitious Circular Economy Package which includes revised legislative proposals on waste to stimulate Europe’s transition towards a circular economy. The circular economy is a generic term for an industry economy that is producing no waste and pollution in which material flows are of two types, biological nutrients designed to re-enter the biosphere safely and technical nutrients which are designed to circulate at high quality in the production system without entering the biosphere. The European commission has unveiled new targets and legislative changes in December to close the loop and improve the circular economy.

These targets include:

  • 65% of municipal waste to be recycled by 2030;
  • 75% of packaging waste to be recycled by 2030;
  • To reduce landfill to maximum of 10% of all waste by 2030;
  • A ban on landfilling of separately collected waste;
  • Promotion of economic instruments to discourage landfilling;
  • Simplified and improved definitions and harmonised calculation methods for recycling rates throughout the EU;
  • Concrete measures to promote re-use and stimulate industrial symbiosis;
  • Economic incentives for producers to put greener products on the market and support recovery and recycling schemes (e.g. for packaging, batteries, electric and electronic equipment and vehicles)
Circular Economy

Circular Economy

Figure 1: Graphical representation of the Circular Economy ( www.wrap.org.uk )

A circular economy of this nature could create more than 170,000 direct jobs in waste management in Europe by 2035 and boost annual EU GDP by 3% given the 20% reduction of materials required if the targets are to be successfully achieved. The circular economy is to be achieved through the revision of six directives:

Sources:

www.ec.europa.eu

www.environ.ie

www.wrap.org.uk

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