About: plastics

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’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.
Circular economy 19-12-2017

Plastics: The invisible oil spill

Plastic is everywhere, polluting our waters, choking marine wildlife, and even in our food and water. It is a problem of global proportions but an ambitious EU Plastics Strategy can create vital momentum, writes Pierre-Yves Cousteau.
Electricity 18-12-2017

Decarbonising Europe: Matching aspiration with action

With renewable electricity costs going through the floor, the EU should increase its 2030 targets and aim for close to zero carbon electricity by 2040. But while power decarbonisation is crucially important, it will not be sufficient to deliver a truly zero carbon economy, writes Adair Turner.
Circular economy 01-12-2017

Upgrade the plastic, don’t ban or tax it

A tax or ban on plastics won't solve pollution problems, but it would deprive the world od a cheap and valuable material. The solution is to make it biodegradable and recyclable, writes Michael Stephen.
Circular economy 21-11-2017

Microplastics, macro problems

Tackling the visible impact of plastic pollution is one thing. But if we’re serious about finding a long-term solution, revealing the invisible impact is imperative, writes the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Jocelyn Blériot, calling for a ban on oxo-degradable plastics that are still widely used in carrier bags.
Circular economy 27-09-2017

Squaring the circle of plastics recycling

The snail pace so far in terms of implementation of the EU Action Plan on the Circular Economy is embarrassing, write Anders Wijkman and Catia Bastioli.

Let life in the oceans be a priority for ‘blue growth’

Today, as we celebrate World Water Day, I would like to highlight the issue of so-called ‘blue growth’. Our oceans can offer enormous opportunities to millions of people, but only if their ecosystems are preserved, writes Linnéa Engström.

Cleaning up the oceans is no solution to our plastic problem

Plastics have brought huge benefits to our society. But with those benefits come environmental problems. Too often, plastic ends up as waste, as marine litter polluting the oceans, or as litter on our beaches.
Agrifood 09-02-2017

Will bioplastics repeat the biofuels saga?

It took years for politicians to wake up to the destructive impact of biofuels, in no small part because of their green-sounding name. With bioplastics we risk falling into the same trap, argues Meadhbh Bolger.
Climate change 20-07-2016

Clearing up the confusion around marine plastics

Contrary to popular myths, most plastic pollution at sea occurs on the seabed and on beaches, not on the surface. If we want to secure the health of our oceans, we need to start looking at preventing marine plastic litter at source, writes Chris Sherrington.

Let’s design out waste for a real Circular Economy

The European Commission must wholeheartedly commit to building a Circular Economy if it is to deliver the benefits for the environment, businesses and the economy that EU citizens expect, writes Simon Wilson.

Why restricting landfilling must be at the heart of the Circular Economy

In early December, the European Commission is due to put forward a revised Circular Economy package. This package opens up new opportunities which will help Europe on its path towards a sustainable future, writes Karl Foerster. 

Circular Economy: Landfill restriction needed

The Circular Economy is the buzzword of the moment in Brussels. But we need to make sure that our focus on “keeping the materials in the circle” does not distract us from our other objectives, argues Karl Foerster.

Plastic waste: A valuable resource

The upcoming review of EU waste legislation offers the chance to revolutionise the way we think about and deal with plastics waste in Europe, argues Carl Van Camp.
Innovation 07-06-2013

Working towards a common goal on risk regulation

If we all agree on the same end goal when it comes to regulating risk, we need to get better at working together, writes Patrick Thomas. Science should always be the cornerstone of risk assessment, but industry needs to make more of an effort to listen to concerns of different stakeholders.

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