Environment and sustainability – June 2022
Rules and regulations and other developments in the Netherlands
The Waste Fund Foundation (in Dutch) has announced that the deposit for cans cannot be introduced until April 2023. In a letter (in Dutch) to the Dutch House, the State Secretary states that she wants to stick to 1 January 2023 as the date of introduction. A consultation (in Dutch) on the recycling percentages of drink cartons has been opened. The policy programme (in Dutch, 879 kB) of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management (IenW) for 2022 includes a possible plastic tax. The minutes (in Dutch, 320 kB) of the Dutch House debate circular economy on 11 May 2022 have been published. The MUNITION project led by Radboud University, will develop a digital tool to support choices between pre-sorting or post-sorting of plastic waste. KIDV foundation (in Dutch) has published a packaging barometer (in Dutch) for fruit and vegetables.
Rules and regulations outside of the Netherlands
UNEP reports on the first steps taken in drafting the UN Plastic Pollution Treaty. The WPO (419 kB) has launched Waste Stream Mapping Guides for 21 countries. Smithers has published an infographic on the impact of EPR for packaging on the industry to 2032 that you can download after filling in your details. EC: The EC is revising the Waste Framework Directive; a public consultation is open until 16 August 2022. The EP has published a briefing (250 kB) on the EU Ecodesign proposal. The EP has also published a draft report (431 kB) on the proposed regulations for shipments of waste. A study (summary, 409 kB) published by CONAI evaluates the performance of Producer Responsibility Organisations (PROs). In an article (2.3 MB) published in Recycling, University of Milano-Bicocca researchers give an overview of packaging waste models in a number of EU countries. Austria: Draft legislation transposing the waste directive has been sent to the EC. Belgium: According to a report (2.04 MB) by Agoria and essenscia (in Dutch), the uptake of PCR plastics increased by 22% between 2018 and 2020. Canada: The government has published regulations to prohibit certain SUPs. France: The government has launched a public consultation (in French) for a draft order on the data of EPR channels. Hong Kong: The government has published draft regulations (706 kB) on EPR for glass beverage containers. Italy: CONAI (in Italian) has announced a decrease in the fees for most of the materials as of 1 July 2022. Latvia: Draft legislation on end-of-waste criteria for biodegradable waste has been sent to the EC. Spain: Draft legislation on end-of-waste criteria for plastic has been sent to the EC. UK: The government has published guidance on how to prepare for EPR for packaging. The Scottish government has launched consultations on a Circular Economy Bill and a Waste Route Map.
Research and reports
The global amount of plastic waste is on track to almost triple by 2060 with less than a fifth recycled, according to a new report by OECD. According to a report (21.62 MB) published by the Changing Markets Foundation (208 kB), retail giants across Europe are guilty of promoting false solutions to the plastic pollution crisis. The University of Illinois reports on a study finding that the US, Brazil and China are the top suppliers of plastic packaging waste. WUR research shows that rivers retain plastic for decades. WSL research published (398 kB) in iForest shows that forest trees take up nanoplastics through their roots. An AWI study shows that wind can transport microplastics great distances. Researchers at the University of Queensland have discovered a species of worm that can eat through polystyrene, thanks to an enzyme in their gut. UT scientists have created a PET-eating enzyme and Leipzig University researchers have discovered an enzyme that breaks down PET in record time. A SYKE study (924 kB) published in Sustainability looks at increasing the circularity of pharmaceutical packaging.