Why Member States should reject the Norwegian proposal at OECD level
Following the adoption of the Norwegian proposal on the 10th of May 2019 to amend the Basel Convention by the Conference of Parties, FEAD concurs with the European Council’s position from 15th April 2019 concerning the outcome of the COP 14, and its potential incorporation into the legal framework.
FEAD supports maintaining the current proceedings for the shipment of non-hazardous plastic wastes, including mixtures of non-hazardous plastic wastes within the EU, EEA and OECD.
Member States of the European Union should therefore refrain from an incorporation of the changes made to the Basel Convention into the OECD Decision.
A restriction to the free movement of plastic waste would be an impediment to their effective recovery and recycling.
Please read our position paper for further details on this important issue.
Position Paper: Packaging - Better Essential Requirements for Better Recyclability
Successful reinforcement of the requirements found in Annex II of the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive should be enacted with the objective of improving design for re-use, promoting high quality recycling, as well as strengthening enforcement in the aforementioned areas.
To this end, FEAD Members have prepared a list of main criteria concerning Annex II of the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive to be taken into account in revision of the essential requirements for packaging. These criteria have been subdivided into distinct sections composed of: (1) Product Design, (2) Market Issues, and (3) Issues with Current Technology.
Read our list of main criteria here.
Drastic drop in exports outside EU & performance downgrade of recycling in EU to be expected from new trade rules for plastic waste
Mixed plastic wastes have been moved from the ‘green’ list’ to the regime of the ‘amber list’. Outside or within EU, exports of plastic waste that are not perfectly sorted, recyclable, and uncontaminated will be subject to prior consent from exporting and importing countries as of January 1, 2021.
FEAD’s president, Jean-Marc Boursier reacted to the adoption of the proposal:
“This international decision, of which we understand the motives but question the effectiveness regarding marine pollution, ignores that recycled wastes are traded on a global commodity market. Such a major drop in the exports of EU collected and sorted plastic waste will affect, in the short and in the long term, the existing separate collection and sorting systems and, finally, downgrade the EU’s recycling performances. In the absence of new markets compensating the lost exports, it will prevent new investments and jobs from being created. The private waste management industry is ready to invest in improving the quality of plastic recyclates only if there is a market for recycled plastics. Pull measures such as mandatory recycled content in products, reduced VAT, mandatory green public procurement, can create a demand shock. Imported products should also be covered by these rules. The EU has to urgently adapt its own intra-EU shipment rules so that shipments of non-hazardous plastic waste for recycling or for recovery remain under the current regime.”
Read about the consequences of this new trade rule and what is really needed in EU Waste Shipment Regulation here.
Joint Statement on the Possible EN 643 Revision
EN 643 is the European List of Standard Grades of Paper and Board for Recycling and was revised in 2014. FEAD, CEPI and EuRIC have published a joint statement on the possible new revision of EN 643 and a possible approach.
At the moment, paper that has been in contact with food is in the prohibited materials section which means that foodstuffs are prohibited in recyclable paper. However, today's technology allows us to handle paper with traces of food and a "little tolerance" of foodstuffs should be allowed.
Therefore, instead of a formal EN 643 revision, we call on CEN to develop an approach to interpret the “zero tolerance” of “organic waste including foodstuffs” in the prohibited materials section by considering a low tolerance level for certain grades. For those, it is important to note that “zero tolerance”, or absolute zero for foodstuffs, does not exist, as a consequence the recycling industry needs a detection threshold for foodstuffs.
For futher details, please consult our position paper here.
FEAD’s workshop reveals how EU can achieve recycling targets
Early April, a new report by the European Commission warned again that half of the EU countries were at risk of missing the recycling target of 50% by 2020. FEAD’s (European Federation for Private Waste and Resource Management Industry) April 9 brainstorming workshop: From Setting Recycling Targets to Achieving Them revealed how circular economy’s stakeholders think the EU can succeed.