On 17 and 18 March 2020 the Circular Materials Conference invites you to reimagine materials with the help of emerging technologies and novel collaborations to create a circular future together.
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Applications to the European Social Innovation Competition 2020 are now open! Under the theme Reimagine Fashion: Changing behaviours for sustainable fashion, the 2020 competition is looking for projects and ideas that will change the ways we produce, buy, use and recycle fashion, moving towards increased global sustainability and changing consumer behaviour at local, national and European levels.
The European Recycling Conference ERC 2020 will be linked to the International Recycling and Recovery Trade Fair, co-organised by EuRIC and FER (Federación Española de la Recuperación y el Reciclaje). At the ERC 2020, you can visit stands of more than 200 exhibitors from over 20 countries, grow your network and listen to the view of the European Recycling Industry.
Europe is at crossroads regarding its management of plastic, plastic waste and the plastic waste trade. Rapidly growing amounts of plastic have negative environmental and climate impacts.
Plastic and plastic waste are traded worldwide. Exporting plastic waste from the EU to Asia is a means of dealing with insufficient recycling capacities in the EU. Waste import restrictions in China have shifted exports to other countries. Because some types of plastic waste have been added to the United Nations Basel Convention, the option of exporting plastic waste is becoming increasingly difficult.
This briefing provides an overview of exports of plastic waste from the 28 EU Member States (EU-28) to other countries and discusses its possible consequences and opportunities.
The Italian Phosphorus Platform was set up to mirror the European Sustainable Phosphorus Platform, following an agreement between ENEA, the platform manager, and the Italian Ministry of Environment. This platform aims to reach national self-sufficiency in the Italian phosphorus supply with a circular approach.
Phosphorus a European critical raw material, with Europe being almost completely dependent on third countries for its supply (phosphate rock: 81%, phosphorus: 100%), and its end-of-life recycling rate is very low (phosphate rock: 17%, phosphorus: 0%) (source: 2017 list of Critical Raw Materials).
The platform features 4 working groups: market, technologies, legislation and good practices. More information on good practices in phosphorus recycling is available here (in Italian).
The previous Commission policy on resources management was part of the priority for jobs and growth and economic competitiveness. The circular economy will be no less important for the new political priority of climate neutrality; it will become one of the indispensable elements for meeting the EU’s ambitions.
EU climate policy and the circular economy are, by and large, complementary and mutually reinforcing. The circular economy is more than just another ‘product standards’ policy.
Circular economy products for the foreseeable future will require both technology push and market pull policies. The principal challenge will be to create ‘lead markets’ for the circular economy in combination with low-carbon products.
Following a successful 1st edition with 10,000 visitors, the Zero Waste Exhibition returns to Brussels on 14 and 16 November 2019
Contaminated sediment from the Port of Dunkirk has been re-used in road structures since 2002, when the Port started to cooperate with the Ecole des Mines de Douai and various industrial partners in order to design alternative materials for stabilised sub-base road layers.
The European Commission has launched a call for proposals under the Horizon 2020 programme, aimed at supporting a pilot group of European cities to produce bio-based products from urban biowaste and wastewater.
The Polyolefin Circular Economy Platform (PCEP) will hold its first Annual Conference in Brussels on 27 November 2019.
Following the success of the fourth edition held in 2018, which saw the participation of almost 250 delegates from a wide variety of countries, SUM 2020 / the 5th Symposium on Urban Mining and Circular Economy will be held in May 2020 at the University of Bologna.
EcoBean is a Polish enterprise that turns waste coffee grounds that would otherwise end up in landfill into a clean energy product – coffee logs!
Rediscover Cycling is a bicycle reuse social enterprise located at the Rediscovery Centre in Ballymun, Dublin.
Rediscover Fashion is a social enterprise that produces 100 % redesigned and repurposed clothing, accessories, and home ware ranges from unwanted textiles, preventing the materials from being sent to landfill.
This social enterprise collects unwanted paint donated at local recycling centres, filters and remixes it to create new paint sold at the Rediscovery Centre’s Eco Store.
Tarpaper Recycling is a recycling specialist minimising the environmental impacts of construction waste. It has developed a patented method to recycle bitumen from roofing-felt waste by converting it into a material that can be used as a binder in asphalt production.
La Tête dans les Nuages gives a second chance to hot air balloons, advertising posters and polystyrene packaging, which would otherwise go to waste, by upcycling them into bean bags.
ISWA will hold its 29th World Congress will be held in Bilbao, Spain from 7 to 9 October 2019
Reverse Resources promotes upcycling of textile leftovers and creates supply chain transparency with online platform
Reverse Resources is an Estonian company that offers an online “circular” solution that tracks and traces waste flows by connecting manufacturers, waste handlers, recyclers/spinners and brands on one platform by offering 360 degree transparency, data accuracy and real-time transactions on waste flows.
The 15th edition of the biannual French waste management conference will take place in Nantes on 2-3 October 2019.
Estonian business Rohepakend has come up with a home-grown alternative to plastic food packaging: a food wrap made from donated cloth, pine resin from Estonian forests and beeswax.
Over the last few years the concept of chemical recycling has been promoted by industry as a potential solution to help curb plastic pollution and waste management as a whole. This Zero Waste Europe report looks into the knowledge available as well as the state of implementation of such technologies in the European context.
Mechanical recycling is a mature industrial process, well established and expanding in Europe. Plastics cannot however be endlessly recycled mechanically without reducing their properties and quality. Besides, not all plastic types can be mechanically recycled. These limits set challenges for plastics recycling and show the need for significant improvements in the end-of-life management of plastics.
Since decades, innovators test gasification and pyrolysis for alternatives to waste to energy incineration with very limited results due to the energy balance and the environmental impact. In general, more information is needed about the environmental performance of chemical recycling technologies, as this industry is in its infancy and most plants are mere pilots. The roll-out of such technologies at industrial scale can only be expected from 2025-2030, an important factor when planning the transition to a Circular Economy and wider decarbonisation.
The right policy framework must accommodate chemical recycling as complementary to mechanical recycling while ensuring that carbon stays in the plastic, thus not being released into the environment. Therefore, allowing plastic to fuels to be considered chemical recycling risks creating a loophole in EU Climate and Circular Economy legislation.
Globe Hope, a Finnish textiles and cosmetics SME, has been creating bags and accessories from recycled and leftover materials since 2003.