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EU waste policy receives criticism

European Commission proposals for a new European Union (EU) waste framework directive have been roundly criticised at a Brussels seminar arranged by think-tank the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS).

Erika Mink, environmental director of packaging giant Tetra Pak, speaking for the Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment, said Brussels’ planned waste prevention targets could become burdensome red tape. She also attacked the Commission’s failure to draft guidelines on public financial aid for waste programmes, warning contrasting national regimes could impede the development of EU recycling materials markets.

European Parliament spokesman on the framework directive and Conservative MEP Caroline Jackson attacked the Commission’s failure to properly define the so-called ‘life cycle’ approach to waste management, despite its centrality within its proposal. “There is no description or definition of it in any document,” said Jackson.

Melissa Shinn, of the European Environmental Bureau, called for harmonisation in measuring efforts to minimise waste.

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