Circular economy

Norway’s crusade against plastic waste, one bottle at a time

A bottle deposit hub on the outskirts of Oslo has had a stream of high-level international visitors. But can its success be replicated worldwide? EURACTIV’s partner The Guardian reports.

Death-knell for microplastics?

MEPs voted on Tuesday (10 July) to amend European Commission plans to cut plastic pollution and suggested a ban on microplastics in cosmetics and other products by 2020.
Agrifood 09-07-2018

Beer-loving Belgium continues shift to wine-making superpower

Climate change is having a massive impact on Europe’s winemakers but the effects are not always negative. Belgium’s industry is on the up thanks to shifting temperature patterns.
05-07-2018

Plastic pollution is solvable without global treaty, says UN environment boss

Plastic pollution and waste has moved more and more into the political and public spotlight over the past year, thanks to large-scale efforts by both the EU and UN. But doubts still remain about whether that is enough to make our economy truly circular.
05-07-2018

Slovakia down in the dumps at €1m EU fine

The European Court of Justice ruled on Wednesday (5 July) that Slovakia has not followed EU rules on landfills and will have to pay a €1 million lump sum fine and penalty payments of €5,000 for every day of delay.
03-07-2018

Thailand: The rich world’s new dumpsite for e-waste

Thailand has become one of the largest dumpsites for electronic waste from developed countries since China’s January ban on the import of plastic waste. EURACTIV’s partner Le Journal de l’environnement reports.

Tackling food waste: turning nemesis into a saviour

The function of food packaging has traditionally been limited to passive protection from external influences, but innovations are quickly changing its role. Packaging is getting active and intelligent, able to monitor and interact with food and environment and maintain food freshness for longer, writes Dr Milka Sokolović.

EU countries call for strict health rules on ‘water contact materials’

An overwhelming majority of member states have voiced support for stricter EU rules on drinking water, saying the same level of safety should apply to products coming in contact with water as for those coming in contact with food.

EU’s proposed tax on burning plastic waste is counter-productive

The CO2 emissions reductions achieved by plastic recycling is very costly when compared to alternatives like wind energy and solar PV, while much energy can be extracted from burning plastic waste, argue Raymond Gradus and Henriëtte Prast.

Why tracking the movement of plastic litter in the oceans is crucial

Five countries at the last G7 summit in Canada signed a Plastics Charter, recognising the need to speed up global action on marine plastics pollution. An IPCC-type framework is now needed to address the issue, writes Dr. Erik van Sebille.
07-06-2018

Waste in the Visegrad Four: Poland leading the way

Despite progress in recent years, local circular economy efforts in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia are still plagued by inefficient management, cheap landfilling and problematic reporting. EURACTIV's network reports.
05-06-2018

Plastic bans among ‘most effective’ ways to beat pollution, says UN

A landmark report by UN environment experts on plastic pollution, published to coincide with World Environment Day (5 June), shows that governments across the world are starting to take action and that bans and levies are starting to take off.
05-06-2018

Circular economy vital to EU’s quest to kill emissions: study

Reusing plastic and metal could help keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius and allow the EU to go emission free by 2050, according to new research on the burgeoning circular economy.

Plastic recycling dilemma in the EU

The EU is in a desperate search for a sustainable circular economy. But critics warn that the imminent adoption of waste recycling targets for 2035 is only a compromise between the very different realities of the 28 countries. EURACTIV Germany reports.
Economy & Jobs 29-05-2018

EU-funded eco market becomes symbol of circular economy in Brussels

L’Abattoir, one of the biggest urban markets in Europe, built in an old slaughterhouse, could well be seen as a symbol of circular economy as it has become a source of income for the poor while promoting sustainable farming on its rooftop.

Commission targets end to throwaway plastic culture

The European Commission presented its long-awaited marine-litter-busting proposal on single-use plastics on Monday (28 May). The first legislative proposal from the Plastics Strategy aims to help the EU clean up the continent's beaches and waterways.

New OECD report shows recycling’s Herculean task

Plastic production is still the go-to option over recycling because of lack of demand, poor collection rates and a fragile market, according to a new report by the OECD, which suggests a number of measures to boost the industry.
Electric cars 23-05-2018

Blossoming batteries boosted by EU plan

Batteries and storage are set to become even more important as electro-mobility and renewable energy go from strength to strength. That is why EU efforts are meant to help the burgeoning industry compete against the likes of China and electric carmaker Tesla.

Packaging industry calls for policy reform to boost plastics recycling

A host of UK packaging organisations have called for more recycling collection points, tax reliefs for recycled content and a universal list of acceptable materials as part of a desired regulation reform to make it easier for consumers to recycle packaging waste. EURACTIV's media partner edie.net reports.

EU prepares to say adieu to single-use plastics

The European Commission is gearing up to reveal how it plans to tackle single-use plastics as part of the much vaunted Plastics Strategy. But an initial draft of the legislation has already received mix reviews.

Why the Commission’s new plastic ban threatens to fall flat

The European Commission wants to ban disposable plastic dishware and cutlery. But critics say this is pointless and manufacturers are unimpressed by the idea. EURACTIV Germany’s media partner WirtschaftsWoche reports.

Ecolabels have lost all credibility, report claims

Lack of transparency, oversights, confusion… A report by the Dutch Foundation Changing Markets, published on 3 May, reveals the inefficiency of environmental labels, particularly for seafood, textiles and palm oil. EURACTIV's partner Le Journal de l'environnement reports.
Energy 04-05-2018

Worries mount over waste incineration as ‘renewable energy’

A coalition of green NGOs and industries in the business of recycling, chemicals, forestry and the bio-based economy wrote to policymakers on Thursday (3 May), urging them to prevent incineration of unrecyclable waste from being counted as renewable energy.
27-04-2018

Plastic-to-fuel, only fuelling fantasy

In light of the challenges that countries are facing due to China’s new standards on plastic recyclables imports, some controversial disposal methods have been getting increased attention, despite the myriad of concerns surrounding them, write Claire Arkin and Janek Vahk.