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Last minute calls for circular economy proposals

The Green Alliance and the Confederation of European Waste to Energy Plants (CEWEP) have made 11th-hour appeals to dictate the policy direction of the European Commission’s circular economy (CE) package.

The CE consultation, which is due to close on 20 August, follows the withdrawal of original proposals in favour of a package with “more ambitious” measures.

In a last minute plea, the Green Alliance calls for the new package to focus on improving design standards in order to promote demand for reused products and recycled materials.

It said that better resource policies can support jobs in areas of high unemployment, and deliver longer-lasting products for householders.

Jonny Hazell, Green Alliance senior policy adviser, says: “The CE package could prove the foundation of a harmonised market in circular economy goods and services, provided it delivers products that are long-lasting and easy to repair and recycle.

“Such a market would generate employment all round the EU and improve the competitiveness of European businesses.

“As importantly, it will deliver savings for households and reduce the global impact of European consumption.”

The CEWEP wants a drastic reduction in the amount of recyclable materials that go to landfill.

It says the CE package presents an opportunity that should not be wasted “considering the huge amount of waste that is still landfilled in EU28”.

The confederation notes that materials which cannot be recycled should be processed in energy-from-waste plants in order to stop landfill sites from increasing in size.

In March, Karl Falkenberg, director general of environment at the Commission, said the final package should be ready by early autumn.

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