The European Commission has proposed new and stricter targets for recycling and recovering packaging waste on 7 December 2001. The proposal is part of the planned revision of the 1994 packaging and packaging waste directive. However, several controversial issues such as prevention, re-use and producer responsibility have been postponed until a later date.
Main elements of the Commission proposal (to be implemented
no later than 30 June 2006):
recovery target of 60-75 percent (as opposed to
50-65 percent under the current requirements)
recycling target of 55-70 percent (as opposed to
25-45 percent under the current requirements)
Material-specific recycling targets (as opposed to
the 15 percent rate of the previous directive): glass: 60 percent;
paper and board: 55 percent; metal packaging: 50 percent; and
mechanical and chemical recycling of plastics: 20 percent.
The proposal also clarifies the definition of
packaging in an annex and makes references to “mechanical
recycling”, “chemical recycling” and “feedstock recycling”.