The European Circular Economy Action Plan strengthens the role of circular economy

12/03/2020
The European Commission presented the EU Circular Economy Action Plan which is driven by the ambition to make sustainable products that last and to modernise and transform the European economy while protecting the environment.

The transition to the circular economy will be systemic, deep and transformative. The EU Circular Economy Action Plan considers circularity, climate neutrality and zero-pollution ambition. The action plan gives the citizens a chance to take a full part in the circular economy and benefit from the positive change that it brings about.

The Circular Economy Action introduces steps to:

  • Make sustainable products the norm in the EU,
  • Empower consumers and public buyers,
  • Focus on the sectors that use most resources and where the potential for circularity is high such as electronics and ICT; batteries and vehicles; packaging; plastics; textiles; construction and buildings; food; water and nutrients,
  • Ensure less waste,
  • Make circularity work for people, regions and cities,
  • Lead global efforts on the circular economy.

In order to achieve climate neutrality, the synergies between circularity and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions will step up. The Commission will analyse how the impact of circularity on climate change mitigation and adaptation can be measured in a systematic way. Modelling tools will be improved to capture the benefits of the circular economy on greenhouse gas emission reduction at EU and national levels. The EC will promote strengthening the role of circularity in future revisions of the National Energy and Climate Plans.

Applied suggested measures in different sectors:

ELECTRONICS and ICT

Products placed on the EU market will be designed to last longer, to be easier to repair and upgrade, recycle and reuse. Providing incentives for product-as-a-service: companies will keep the ownership and responsibility for the product throughout its lifecycle.

TEXTILES

Driving new business models will boost sorting, reuse and recycling of textiles, and allow consumers to choose sustainable textiles. Ecodesign will apply to a broader range of products: clothes will be made to last longer.

PLASTICS

Single-use products will be phased out wherever possible and replaced by durable products for multiple uses. Acting on microplastics - restricting intentionally added microplastics, increasing the capture of microplastics at all relevant stages of the product lifecycle.

FOOD and PACKAGING

New legislative initiatives on reuse to substitute single-use packaging, tableware and cutlery by reusable products in food services, as well as targets for reducing packaging waste will be proposed.

WASTE

Measures will be introduced for waste prevention and reduction, increasing recycled content, minimising waste exports outside the EU. An EU model for separate collection and labelling of products will be launched.

 

Read the official statement from the EC here.

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