S&Ds push through ambitious targets for waste reduction and recycling, crucial for a Circular Economy

Waste reduction

Today the S&D Group pushed through ambitious proposals for waste management at a vote in the environment committee.  S&D MEP Simona Bonafè, who is the author of four reports on Waste reduction and recycling - directives on waste, landfills, packaging and vehicle, battery and electronic equipment recycling - got strong support to strengthen waste prevention, and encourage the development of an efficient market in secondary raw materials. These two pillars are central to driving the EU towards a Circular Economy.
 
S&D MEP Simona Bonafè said:
 
“We are committed to leading a transition towards an economic model that reduces waste and promotes re-use, efficiency, durability and recycling. We cannot continue with the existing paradigm.  Around 600 million tonnes of waste are just thrown away in Europe, when they could be reinvested in the economy. It is a matter of sustainability, efficiency and ethics.
 
“We managed to go back to the most ambitious targets made by the European Commission back in 2014:  70% of waste recycled by 2030, as well as a waste landfill target restricted to 5% by 2030.
 
“Separate waste collection systems for different kinds of waste will be set up. This is a pre-requisite for establishing a high-quality recycling market, and for reaching the targets set. The current rules which grant exemptions on technical, environmental and economic grounds have, in practice, led to this requirement not being fully applied by some member states. 
 
“The report also sets out measures for halving food waste and reducing marine litter. These are top priorities for the S&D Group, which are in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) commitments.”
 
S&D spokesperson on environment, Miriam Dalli MEP, said:
 
"The result obtained today ensures a strong, ambitious and pragmatic approach to the Circular Economy. The Socialists and Democrats have always been very positive about ensuring a new productive cycle that works and provides new opportunities for innovation.
 
“The reports provide the appropriate measures that can help a change in attitude by making sure that very little goes to waste whilst protecting our environment, reduce resource loss and providing new economic opportunities whilst creating new jobs.
 
“If businesses, government and citizens all do their part, the European economy can really move to a path of sustainable growth. Using less of the Earth's resources more efficiently will help us create a new economic model."