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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The EU will launch a new satellite this week as part of the ‘Copernicus’ initiative. The earth observation programme has proved to be useful in dealing with natural disasters and its importance will grow to manage EU funds including the Common Agricultural Policy after 2020, director Philippe Brunet said.
Cotton buds, plastic drinking straws and other single-use plastics could be banned from sale in England next year in the next phase of the campaign to try to halt the pollution of the world’s rivers and oceans. EURACTIV’s partner The Guardian reports.
Tetra Pak, the iconic Swedish maker of beverage cartons, is currently staying away from using recycled plastics in the inside lining of its packages – the most sensitive bit that comes in contact with drinks. But this could all change under EU proposals due this year.
As the EU doubles down on its waste management efforts and sets its sights on tackling plastic waste, the idea of a circular economy and internal market for recycling is gathering momentum. But it will not be an easy task for lawmakers or industry to realise.
The European Commission is aiming to reveal its plan to curb single-use plastics in May, in what will be the first proposal to come out of its much-vaunted Plastics Strategy. But industry and civil society are still divided over what should be its fundamental goal.