On 20 September 2019, more than 100 public and private partners covering the whole plastics value chain signed the declaration of the Circular Plastics Alliance, which promotes voluntary actions for a well-functioning EU market in recycled plastics.
The declaration sets out how the alliance will reach the target of 10 million tonnes of recycled plastic used to make new products every year in Europe, by 2025. This target was set by the European Commission in its 2018 Plastics Strategy, as part of its efforts to boost plastics recycling in Europe.
46 of these pledges are already published on the ECESP website to ensure transparency and accountability.
First Vice-President Frans Timmermans, responsible for sustainable development, said:
“I welcome the industry's commitments to rethink the way we produce and use plastics. By efficiently recycling plastics, we will clean up the planet and fight climate change, by substituting fossil fuels with plastic waste in the production cycle.”
Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska, responsible for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, said:
We have the opportunity to make our industry a world leader in recycled plastics. We should fully seize it to protect the environment, to create new jobs in this sector and remain competitive.”
The declaration, signed by small and medium businesses, large corporations, business associations, standardisers, research organisations, and local and national authorities (including ACR+, ECESP Coordination Group member), endorses the 10 million tonnes target and calls for a shift to zero plastic waste in nature and zero landfilling. It sets out concrete actions to reach the target, including:
- improving the design of plastic products to make them more recyclable and integrate more recycled plastics;
- identifying untapped potential for more plastic waste collection, sorting and recycling across the EU, as well as the investment gaps;
- building a Research & Development agenda for circular plastics;
- establishing a transparent and reliable monitoring system to track all flows of plastic waste in the EU.
The declaration of the Alliance will remain open for new signatories to join on the Commission's website, in particular public authorities from across Europe.
Business associations and companies are also encouraged to submit voluntary pledges to use or produce more recycled plastics, if they have not yet done so. Interested parties may email this address for further information: GROW-ENV-RPLASTICS-PLEDGE@ec.europa.eu