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EU sets challenging packaging targets in new strategy

The EU has unveiled its strategy on tackling plastic pollution, declaring that it wants every packaging item reusable or recyclable by 2030.

According to a report in The Guardian, the vice president of the European Commission Frans Timmermans said that the priority to clamp down on single-use plastics. The report added that the EU is to launch a strategy designed to tax “damaging behavior” and invest €350m in plastics production research.

Timmermans added: “If we don’t do anything about this, 50 years down the road we will have more plastic than fish in the oceans. We are going to choke on plastic if we don’t do anything about this.”

The EU will carry out an impact assessment on the taxing of single use plastics. It also wants 55% of all plastic to be recycled by 2030.

EUROPEN welcomed the EU’s plastics strategy and said that it was “an important contribution towards achieving the objectives of a circular strategy”.

“We remain committed to strengthening the sustainability of all aspects of the packaging value chain and supporting EU efforts towards a Circular Economy,” said Hans Van Bochove, EUROPEN chairman. “Harmonising and strengthening our waste management systems across Europe, in line with what has just been agreed by the EU in the Waste Framework and Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive, is rightly indicated as a key priority. We are pleased to see Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) recognised as playing a key part in strengthening packaging waste management in Europe, which EUROPEN has supported from the outset.

“EU minimum requirements for EPR will increase accountability for all private and public stakeholders. If implemented well, EPR and modulated EPR fees play an important role in creating incentives for producers’ packaging design choices and boost innovation in the packaging supply chain.

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Source: Packaging News (2018). EU sets challenging packaging targets in new strategy.

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