About: Waste and recycling

Circular materials 23-04-2021

Last minute EU taxonomy changes water down sustainability criteria for waste, NGOs say

The European Commission on Wednesday (21 April), tabled a first set of implementation rules under the EU's sustainable finance taxonomy, but changes made since a draft leaked last week have weakened criteria on waste management, campaigners say.
Circular economy 25-02-2021

Soft drinks industry aims for 100% recycled or renewable plastic by 2030

European soft drink makers unveiled their new vision for 2030 on Monday (22 February), announcing plans to reach 100% recycled or renewable materials in plastic bottles by the end of the decade.
Circular economy 10-02-2021

Lawmakers back mandatory targets in EU circular economy action plan

Lawmakers in the European Parliament adopted a set of ambitious proposals on the EU’s circular economy action plan on Tuesday (9 February), including calls to introduce mandatory targets to reduce waste.
Circular economy 27-01-2021

Circular economy can cut CO2 emissions by 39%: study

Switching to a circular economy could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 39% and ease pressure on virgin materials by 28%, according to the Circularity Gap Report, published on Tuesday (26 January).

Recyclers fret as EU plastic waste export ban comes into force

New EU rules came into force on 1 January, prohibiting the shipment of unsorted plastic waste to foreign countries. Although the move will increase pressure on Europe to recycle, activists say the ban is likely to increase landfilling and waste burning inside the Union.
Circular economy 10-12-2020

Blue, yellow or white? Recycling varies widely in the EU

Deposit return and extended producer responsibility schemes are everywhere in the EU but have very different rules. Does this present a barrier to meeting the EU’s recycling objectives?

Plastic waste: how to square the circle

The EU’s circular economy plan aims to halve municipal waste in the next decade by increasing recycling rates. Can companies boost the use of recycled plastics in time to meet the target?

Plastic waste management

Download PDF  

The European Commission launched a circular plastics alliance in 2018, with an initial pledge of reaching 10 million tonnes of recycled plastics used in products by 2025. Can the industry rise to the challenge?
Circular economy 01-12-2020

Recycler: Simpler EU laws would help recycle e-waste plastics

Around half of e-waste plastics are not recycled in Europe but rather shipped abroad where they often end up being dumped or burnt. Simpler laws on recycling in Europe would help keep those materials at home and recycle them, argues Chris Slijkhuis.
Circular economy 19-11-2020

Waste incineration across Europe and the UK: profit at the expense of climate

The EU and the UK must bring waste incineration plants within the scope of emissions trading schemes (ETS) if they are to achieve net zero-emissions and comply with the Paris Agreement, writes Georgia Elliott-Smith.

Fixing plastic collection seen as vital to success of chemical recycling

Two billion people worldwide do not have access to proper waste collection services, leading to ever-growing plastic pollution in oceans and waterways, particularly in the global south.
Circular economy 24-09-2020

EU plans harmonised colour code for bin bags

The colour of garbage bags could soon be harmonised across the 27 EU member states under European Commission plans to improve waste collection and boost recycling.

Call it by its name: Synthetic gas and oil from old plastics is not ‘recycling’, it’s ‘recovery’

The term “chemical recycling” should only be used for plastic waste reconverted into new plastics. If those plastics are transformed into fuels or petrochemical products, the process should be called “recovery” instead, write Shanar Tabrizi and Fanny Rateau.

Chemical recycling ‘promising’ for circular economy, EU official says

While chemical recycling opens new possibilities for the circular economy, only a full lifecycle approach will be able to determine the real environmental benefits in terms of saved energy and global warming emissions, a senior EU official has said.

Britain to get first commercial refinery for extracting precious metals from e-waste

The UK is to get its first commercial refinery for extracting precious metals from electronic waste, which will also be the world’s first to use bacteria rather than cyanide-based processes.
Circular economy 19-08-2020

Economic meltdown threatens Europe’s war on plastic

Giving a new life to plastic trash gets Carlos Bento out of bed every morning. But the coronavirus pandemic has seen revenues drop up to 40% at Micronipol, the large recycling facility he runs in central Portugal, and it faces an uncertain future.
Circular economy 04-06-2020

‘Open strategic autonomy’: A vision for Europe’s raw materials future

Europe’s “green recovery” will be based on industrial leadership in the production of computers, batteries, electric vehicles, and wind turbines, writes Anna-Michelle Asimakopoulou.
Circular economy 18-05-2020

Portugal suspends foreign trash imports to cope with own waste surge

Portugal, which usually attracts huge mounds of rubbish from other European states because of its low waste management fees, has suspended imports of trash until the end of 2020 to protect domestic landfill capacity, the government said on Saturday (16 May).
Energy 03-02-2020

Glass: A low-hanging fruit for the climate – and a tough nut to crack

Glass is irreplaceable in buildings, making it a key part of the solution to unlock energy savings and help reach Europe's decarbonisation targets. But it's also an energy-intensive industry, for which no immediate clean energy alternative is available.
Circular economy 31-01-2020

LEAK: EU’s new circular economy plan aims to halve waste by 2030

The European Commission will aim to “absolutely decouple” economic growth from natural resource use in a draft circular economy action plan due to be unveiled in March.
Circular economy 17-01-2020

Plastic waste and recycling: France among EU’s ‘poor performers’

While the EU's plastic recycling rate has seen a slight increase of 1.4% between 2016 and 2018 amounting to 32.5% total according to Plastics Europe, France has been dragging the average down with a 24.2% recycling rate in 2018. EURACTIV's partner le Journal de l'Environnement reports.
Circular economy 08-01-2020

Business strategies for cost-saving circular economy solutions

Circular economy principles offer compelling strategic and operational benefits for the manufacturing industry. These include substantial cost savings, which companies should take advantage of, writes Rafael Go.
Circular economy 02-12-2019

EU Waste Regulation – Blazing a trail for circular consumer packaging?

Consumers appreciate recyclates in packaging as long as it doesn’t affect the quality, functionality and price of the product. But how do companies remain competitive in view of added costs for high-quality recycling and the low price of virgin plastics? Michael Laermann tries to find the answer.
Batteries 20-11-2019

Hazards ahead: Electric cars face battery recycling hurdles in Europe

European recyclers have called for changes to EU regulations on hazardous metals and waste shipment that “sometimes stand in the way” of a fully European electric car manufacturing value chain.