Plastics strategy

France dumps 11,200 tonnes of plastic in the Mediterranean every year

600,000 tonnes of plastic are being dumped by 22 countries in the Mediterranean Sea every year, of which 11,200 tonnes come from France. EURACTIV's partner La Tribune reports.

Plastic production on the rise worldwide but slowing in Europe

While the global production of plastics is increasing, it is slowing down in Europe, according to PlasticsEurope, the leading pan-European association of plastics manufacturers. EURACTIV's partner le Journal de l'Environnement reports.

Timmermans: A green candidate in the red corner

Frans Timmermans, the Socialists’ leading candidate, has promised a sustainable Europe if he is given the nod to lead the next European Commission. But how sustainable are the Dutchman’s green credentials?

How can EU members make good on new single-use plastics law?

The European Parliament and the Council gave their official green light to the Single-use Plastics Directive on Tuesday morning (21 May). Larissa Copello de Souza explains how the implementation period is a golden opportunity to raise the bar even further.
Circular economy 30-04-2019

Karmenu Vella on circular economy: ‘Nothing to gain from waiting’

Circular economy wrangling has kept the EU busy for the last few years, from withdrawn policies to far-reaching recycling strategies. The EU's outgoing environment boss, Karmenu Vella, insists that industry is still critical to waste-reducing efforts and that “there is nothing to gain from waiting”.

German associations call for binding reusable packaging quotas

Since the start of this year, a new packaging law that aims to reduce disposable plastics has been in force in Germany. But so far, the share of disposable plastics has actually seen an increase in the beverages sector and German associations criticise the lack of binding regulations. EURACTIV Germany reports.

Microplastics also travel through the air, says new study

Microplatics are not only found in the world’s oceans but can also reach isolated areas by air, according to a study published in Nature Geoscience on 15 April. EURACTIV’s partner le Journal de l'environnement reports.
Health 23-04-2019

British football clubs want to lead the way in reducing single-use plastics

Football can bring joy or frustration to supporters... but also a lot of waste. UK football teams have decided to introduce reusable cups in stadiums, as part of a joint initiative by the Premier League and British TV channel Sky News.

Franco-Dutch plastic ‘coalition of the willing’ takes shape

The French and Dutch governments have both penned national pacts that go beyond what EU rules on plastic waste stipulate. On Friday (5 April), they kicked off a process they hope will culminate in a European Plastics Summit in 2020.
Circular economy 05-04-2019

EU gears up for sustainability legacy handover

The outgoing European Commission has got through a lot of work when it comes to the circular economy but now attention is turning to the future and how to make sure recycling efforts really take off.

Chemical recycling of plastic: Waste no more?

Plastics recycling is as much of a challenge as an opportunity for the circular economy. Michael Laermann looks at chemical recycling and whether it can make the plastics value chain more circular whilst providing a profitable new industry branch.
Circular economy 30-01-2019

Circular economy must remain a priority for Europe beyond the 2019 elections

The Circular Economy Package and Plastics Strategy have set a high-level framework to improve the resource efficiency of the European economy. But to be effective, this framework must remain a policy priority for the next European Commission and Parliament, writes Nick Molho.

Crunch time for crisp makers as EU waste targets loom

The European Commission has set an EU-wide objective for all packaging to be recyclable or reusable by 2030. But crisp packets are a particular headache for policymakers and the recycling industry because they are so tiny and lightweight.

New Caledonia bans disposable plastics

On 27 December, the Congress of New Caledonia voted to do away with most single-use plastic objects by 2020. EURACTIV France’s media partner the Journal de l’environnement reports.

EU nails rapid-fire deal on single-use plastics

Negotiators of the European Parliament, Council and Commission struck a provisional agreement early Wednesday morning (19 December) on banning single-use plastic products like cutlery and food containers, in what is one of the most quickly finalised proposals in recent EU memory.

Food packaging and the environment: Towards the end of single-use packaging?

Plastic plays a significant role in food packaging as: it serves to meet product safety and quality requirements. However, some types of packaging remain difficult to recycle for a number of technological and practical reasons and are prone to littering.
Circular economy 22-11-2018

What’s the point of recycling?

It is easy to rank EU member states by how proficient they are at recycling but the details behind the statistics are more complex. Scratch beneath the surface and there is a quasi-philosophical issue lying in wait.
Circular economy 20-11-2018

Injecting responsibility into recycling

Collecting and recycling waste is more important than ever, since EU targets ask more and more from member states. But national capitals face a dilemma about how best to recycle more, as two distinct schemes offer two very different solutions.
Circular economy 19-11-2018

Europe’s packaging headache

European Union members will have to recycle at least 70% of packaging by 2030, under new rules brokered earlier this year. But there are complex mechanisms behind the recycling curtain and not all countries are ready yet to keep up with the pace.
Circular economy 19-11-2018

The nitty-gritty of recycling

Download PDF  

The EU now has a whole raft of rules, both finalised and pending, geared towards increasing the effectiveness and, perhaps more importantly, profitability of recycling. But beyond the headline targets, how are countries going to stick to the rules?

MEPs crank up crusade against single-use plastics

MEPs moved on Wednesday (24 October) to ban widely-used, throw-away plastics such as straws, bags and cotton buds, putting the burden on manufacturers to recycle more in an effort to clear up ocean pollution.
Circular economy 22-10-2018

Drinks giants rail against EU bottle cap plan

Multinationals Coca Cola, Danone, Nestlé and PepsiCo want to improve existing recycling systems rather than invest in new bottle designs with attached caps, which is the EU’s preferred way of curbing plastic waste.

Banned plastics: European Parliament’s list grows longer

MEPs in the environment committee are extending the ban on single-use plastics. They are also targeting takeaway packaging, bottles and cigarette butts. EURACTIV France’s media partner, the Journal de l’environnement reports.
Circular economy 11-10-2018

EU emphasises ‘ecological limitations’ of new bioeconomy plan

The European Commission unveiled a new bioeconomy strategy on Thursday (11 October), saying it could reduce the EU's dependence on fossil fuels while underlining the ecological limitations of Europe’s farming and forestry sector.

Want to know what's going on in the EU Capitals daily? Subscribe now to our new 9am newsletter.