Circular economy

13-05-2022

New EU laws risk promoting ‘downcycling’ of plastic bottles, industry warns

European Commission plans to include mandatory recycled content targets for all plastics in a makeover of packaging laws expected this summer risk derailing attempts by plastic bottle manufacturers to reach closed loop recycling, the industry has warned.
26-04-2022

No green and digital transition without raw materials, EU warns

Europe's transition to a sustainable and digital society is only possible with a strategic approach to the raw materials needed to manufacture chips, electric vehicles and renewable energy technologies, the EU's internal market Commissioner Thierry Breton said on Monday (25 April).
11-04-2022

Mirror, mirror on the wall, is polyethylene terephthalate the most circular of them all?

Plastic drinks bottles made from PET have been heralded as the most circular, but there are questions about whether this is really the case, and more needs to be done to ensure they are recycled in a closed-loop, writes Dorota Napierska.
05-04-2022

Raw materials: why Europe needs to ramp up its battery game

Europe can play a special role in setting standards that have a global impact and prevent batteries from being discarded prematurely, writes Claudius Jehle.
31-03-2022

EU pushes new ‘circular economy’ rules for everyday items

Smartphones, clothes and furniture will have to become longer-lasting and easier to repair and recycle in order to gain access to the EU market under new sustainability rules proposed by the European Union on Wednesday (30 March).
30-03-2022

Brussels targets greenwashing, planned obsolescence in new EU consumer rules

New rules presented by the European Commission on Wednesday (30 March) aim to better protect consumers against false environmental claims and introduce a ban on greenwashing and planned obsolescence.
22-03-2022

Let us not replace one dependence with another

The soaring price of rare metals could become a crisis on a par with energy costs if political leaders do not take action now, writes Zakia Khattabi.
Circular materials 17-03-2022

EU recycling chief: product policy should embrace circular economy

With the European Commission due to present its Sustainable Products Action Plan on 30 March, Emmanuel Katrakis takes stock of the EU's push for a more circular economy in an interview with EURACTIV France.
Technology 09-03-2022

MEPs try to gain first-mover advantage on right to repair

EU lawmakers want to stay ahead of the game on the right to repair, preparing a motion to lobby on the European Commission’s upcoming proposal and overall legislative framework. The European Commission committed to putting forth a legislative proposal on...
03-03-2022

EU lawmakers to accelerate adoption of circular economy package

Legislative proposals on the circular economy are expected by the end of March, according to a two-day joint conference organised by the French EU Council, the EU Commission and the Economic and Social Committee (EESC). EURACTIV France reports.
18-02-2022

France should start mining lithium at home, minister says

France should start exploiting its own lithium resources to meet increased demand stemming from a shift away from fossil fuels, Barbara Pompili, the country's environment minister, said in a video interview published on Thursday (17 February) by business daily Les Echos.
16-02-2022

High recycling rate of PET bottles questioned in new study

PET bottles used as packaging for soft drinks and mineral waters are often touted as the greenest type of plastic, with one of the highest recycling rates in the industry. But those claims are new being challenged by new research.
11-02-2022

Brussels to address hazardous chemicals in EU green products initiative

The European Commission will seek to address “the presence of hazardous substances” in a wide range of products as part of its upcoming Sustainable Products Initiative (SPI), despite warnings from industry that it could conflict with the EU’s existing chemicals safety legislation.

Academic: ‘Mandatory EU labelling is the only way to fight proliferation of ecolabels’

The European Commission's upcoming sustainable product initiative should seek to clean the market for ecolabels and impose an EU-wide standard based on lifecycle assessment, says Professor Finkbeiner. However, "I doubt that the EU Commission will be brave enough to put out a mandatory label," he told EURACTIV in an interview.
08-02-2022

EU tests blockchain certification scheme for rare earths, EV batteries

An EU-funded certification scheme using blockchain is being developed for rare earths as automakers demand proof that materials used to make magnets for electric vehicles (EVs) are not linked to toxic pollution. The system will set global standards and give...
Enlargement 04-02-2022

Serbia’s green activists rally against lithium mining

Hundreds of Serbian environmental activists on Thursday (3 February) blocked Belgrade's city centre, demanding a ban on all lithium and borates mining and exploration in the Balkan country.
02-02-2022

EU to tackle ‘green claims’ with unified product lifecycle methodology

The European Commission is preparing to table a proposal on 30 March that will force companies to substantiate their environmental claims, using an EU-wide methodology that has been in the making for nearly ten years.
01-02-2022

EU’s green products initiative to emulate eco-design, battery rules

The EU Sustainable Products Initiative, set to be adopted on 30 March, will draw inspiration from the successful Eco-design Directive and lessons learnt from the Batteries Regulation presented one year ago.
28-01-2022

Reaching critical mass: EU eyes increased collection of lightweight packaging

Getting enough volume is the first challenge for recyclers when it comes to dealing with lightweight packaging such as crisp packets and food wrappers. To boost quantities and make recycling worthwhile, the European Commission is looking at ways of harmonising waste collection across the EU.
27-01-2022

Simpler design seen as key to recycling-friendly food wrappers

Simple design and using at least 90% of the same plastic is the key to easy-to-recycle packaging for foods like crisps and chocolate, according to the industry.
26-01-2022

Recycling pro: Design standardisation is ‘way forward’ for flexible packaging

Greater standardisation in design "has to be the way forward" in order to make it worthwhile economically to recycle lightweight packaging such as crisp packets. In practice, this also means reducing the variety of packaging available to the food and drink industry, says Joachim Quoden.
24-01-2022

‘Flexible packaging’ – a test case for the EU’s recycling push

Lightweight soft packaging such as crisp packets or wrapping for chocolate bars are giving headaches to European recyclers who currently have little incentive to buy the collected material. The European Commission will seek to address this in July with its planned revision of the EU’s packaging and packaging waste directive.

Beverage cartons will only use recycled or renewable materials by 2030, industry says

Beverage carton producers have pledged to make cartons from 100% renewable and recycled material and cut down on their plastic consumption by 2030 to increase their sustainability and help meet global climate goals.
06-12-2021

EU plans ‘digital product passport’ to boost circular economy

The European Commission plans to introduce a "digital product passport" early next year that would contain information about the composition of goods on the European market to help boost their chances of being reused and recycled.

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