Environment and sustainability – August 2023

04 September 2023

Rules and regulations in the EU
The EC is asking for feedback on the adoption of the proposal for the Waste Framework Directive. The EP has adopted its position on revising the Ecodesign framework for sustainable products (ESPR). Draft legislation to improve product durability and to put a stop to misleading claims has been discussed in EP IMCO. A report (2.76 MB) by the EU Court of Auditors shows that there is little sign so far of the transition to a circular economy. Belgium: A draft Cooperation Agreement for EPR has been sent to the EC. Estonia: Draft legislation amending the Waste Act has been sent to the EC. France: The State Council has issued its final ruling (in French) on the Decree (in French) forbidding the Green Dot, deciding to cancel it entirely. A new decree has been published banning fresh fruit and vegetables packaged in plastic as of 1 July 2023. More information can be found here (in Dutch). FPF reports that the government is working on standardised glass packaging (in French) and on a DRS for glass. Germany: DSD reports on draft legislation promoting reusable packaging. Hungary: Draft legislation on biodegradable waste has been sent to the EC. PwC reports on EPR draft legislation (in Hungarian). Ireland: The government is introducing a waste recovery levy (204 kB) as of 1 September 2023. NL all info is in Dutch unless mentioned otherwise: The government has published Q&A as a second addition to the consideration framework on the scope of the SUP regulations. The Dutch House was also briefed on a proposal to expand the approach to SUPs. The monitoring report 2022 (187 kB) by the Waste Fund (in English) shows a recycling and reuse rate of 88%. 68% of plastic bottles was collected (legal target is 90%). The monitoring (522 kB) of beverage packaging in litter in 2022, sent to the house, shows that the proportion of cans has increased by 17% compared to 2021. Utrecht University research reveals that a large amount of plastic remains unreported. KIDV has published a vision document (includes English summary, 1.57 MB) on the future of chemical recycling. VTCR has also published her vision (277 kB). Coffee Cup Pact research shows that cups made of PP have the lowest environmental impact.

Rules and regulations outside the EU
: The government has opened a consultation on recycled content traceability. Canada: The government has opened a consultation on a Pollution Prevention Planning Notice for plastic food packaging. New Zealand: The government has published guidance on the SUPs that are banned as of 1 July 2023. UK: Defra has opened a consultation on the EPR regulations and also reports that the rules will be deferred a year to October 2025. A consultation on the potential use of a mass balance approach for chemically recycled content for the plastic tax has been opened.

Packaging design for recyclability – guidelines and reports
The 4evergreen alliance has added beverage packaging to its fibre-based guideline (3.28 MB). EUROSAC and CEPI Eurokraft have published guidelines for paper sacks. RecyClass has released a new set of guidelines for all plastic packaging streams. FEICA had published a paper (1.05 MB) on adhesives in the context of paper and board recycling. FINAT has published a whitepaper (917 kB) entitled ‘Role Of Self-Adhesive Labels In PET Recycling’.

A report (5.41 MB) by EA, shows that Plastic Overshoot Day 2023 was on 28 July. In part 1 and part 2 of an article, WUR researchers discuss the road to sustainable plastics by 2050. Erik van Sebille’s inaugural lecture ‘Stand up for the ocean’ as Professor of Oceanography & Public Engagement at Utrecht University is available online. Researchers from the University of Gothenburg have found that perch change their behaviour when exposed to PLA.

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