The European Commission has revamped its Circular Economy Package, targeting raw materials, products and waste, energy savings and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The plans include a strategy on plastics in the circular economy, addressing issues of recyclability, biodegradability, the presence of hazardous substances in plastics, and significantly reducing marine litter.
The plans will be supported financially by €5.5bn (£3.9bn) from structural funds for waste management, and €650m (£458m) from Horizon 2020, the European Union (EU) funding programme for research and innovation.
The proposals cover the full lifecycle, from production and consumption to waste management and the market for secondary raw materials.
In December 2014, the commission decided to withdraw a pending legislative proposal on waste.
European Commission first vice-president Frans Timmermans, responsible for sustainable development, said: “Our planet and our economy cannot survive if we continue with the 'take, make, use and throw away' approach. We need to retain precious resources and fully exploit all the economic value within them.
“The circular economy is about reducing waste and protecting the environment, but it is also about a profound transformation of the way our entire economy works. By rethinking the way we produce, work and buy we can generate new opportunities and create new jobs.”
The plans include:
- Action to reduce food waste including a common measurement methodology, improved date marking, and tools to meet the global Sustainable Development Goal to halve food waste by 2030
- Development of quality standards for secondary raw materials to increase the confidence of operators in the single market
- Targeting water reuse including a legislative proposal on minimum requirements for the reuse of wastewater.
In addition, revised legislative proposals on waste across member states include
- Recycling 65% of municipal waste by 2030
- Recycling 75% of packaging waste by 2030
- A binding landfill target to reduce landfill to maximum of 10% of all waste by 2030
The commission is now calling on the European Parliament and Council to prioritise adoption and implementation of the legislative proposals.