Circular economy


Building a sustainable future – The revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive

The European Commission identifies buildings in the EU as the primary energy consumer, accounting for 40% of our energy consumption and 36% of greenhouse gas emissions.

EU Parliament approves new rules to reduce, reuse and recycle packaging

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The European Parliament has adopted by a large majority a new directive on packaging and packaging waste. The text includes measures to prevent the production of waste, but also to promote the reuse and recycling of certain types of packaging.


EU Parliament approves new ‘ecodesign’ rules to make products more sustainable

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The European Parliament approved on Tuesday (23 April) new rules to make products sold in the EU more reusable, repairable, upgradeable, and recyclable.

Technology 23-04-2024

EU Parliament ratifies Right to Repair Directive

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Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) voted in favour of the Right to Repair Directive on Tuesday (23 April), aimed at improving consumer access to repair services in order to reduce waste.


Europe finalises rules for more recycling, less waste exports

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On Monday, the Council of the EU unanimously voted to adopt the revised Waste Shipment Regulation. This text, which now becomes EU law, aims to encourage more local waste management and greater recycling of raw materials, while exports of waste to non-EU countries will be reduced. 

Apartments Ukraine 2022

Building back better: Ukrainian reconstruction has already begun – let’s make it sustainable

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this pivotal moment for Ukraine’s economy, society and future prospects, multilateral donors and policymakers have a responsibility to ensure money flows towards building better than before. Investment criteria that prioritizes sustainability is not a box-ticking exercise: it’s about meeting people’s needs: for employment, independence, long-term security and resilience, and to restore hope and opportunity for the people of Ukraine.


Europe needs to step up circular economy efforts: EU agency

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Europe must accelerate efforts to transform its economy into a circular one focused on reusing or repurposing materials to cut waste, a necessity if it is meet climate targets, the European Environment Agency warned Thursday (21 March).


EU gives final green light to critical raw materials strategy

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The Council of the EU gave its final approval on Monday (18 March) for a strategy to secure a sustainable supply of raw materials critical for the green transition, digital industries, and defence sectors, it said in a press release.

EU Parliament approves proposal to reduce textile and food waste

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The European Parliament on Wednesday (13 March) backed targets for the prevention and reduction of food and textile waste across the bloc. However, environmental NGOs have criticised the proposal's lack of ambition. 


Level up EU circular economy: Unlock the power of mixed waste sorting

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As the European Union undergoes a crucial revision of its Waste Framework Directive, there is a pressing need for bold and innovative strategies to address the crisis of waste incineration and landfilling, write Alex Darut and Janek Vahk.



Lawmakers back EU law to cut food and textile waste

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The European Parliament's environment committee voted on Wednesday (14 February) in favour of EU targets to reduce food waste as well as an obligation on the textile industry to pay for the trash it generates.

Politics 08-02-2024

EU Commission warns Romania over landfill waste management

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Romania received a warning on Wednesday for failing to fully comply with the Landfill and Waste Framework Directives despite having already been fined by the European Court of Justice in December.


Why fashion’s ‘recycling’ is not saving the planet

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The industry sells itself on producing clothes from 'recycled materials', but these are mostly made from recycled plastics that cannot be recycled a second time. NGOs explain that the only solution is to buy less clothing.

Climate change 02-02-2024

The case for separate targets in the EU’s 2040 climate strategy

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As EU policymakers prepare to announce the specifics of the 2040 target, there is a clear risk the EU’s climate ambition could be undermined through a poor design, write Eadbhard Pernot, Mark Preston Aragones and Fabiola De Simone.


EU-backed green certification scheme for raw materials launched, in world first

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Germany’s TÜV Nord Group is launching the world’s "first and only comprehensive certification" scheme for critical raw materials along the entire value chain – from exploration to extraction and processing, up to the final product.


Packaging waste regulation offers a final test of Europe’s commitment to the Green Deal

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In the face of an escalating packaging waste crisis, European citizens and circular businesses are still eagerly waiting for the EU institutions to finally deliver credible rules to stop the growth of throwaway packing, writes Marco Musso.


EU Commission wants captured CO2 to become ‘tradeable commodity’

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A leaked European Commission paper on “industrial carbon management”, to be published on 6 February, lays the groundwork for captured carbon dioxide to be “recycled” in chemical processes or used as maritime and jet fuel, while accounting for non-emitted CO2 in the bloc’s carbon market.

Spanish pellet spill puts EU law on microplastic pollution in the spotlight

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A recent spill of plastic pellets on the Spanish coast has highlighted the need for regulation at EU level, with environmental groups pushing for a zero tolerance approach to plastic pollution.


Why Europe should become a hub for innovation in materials

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Europe’s lack of own mineral reserves means that any strategy that fails to fully support the development of innovative materials to displace raw materials will fall short, writes Linus Froböse.

Circular materials 12-01-2024

Recycling market in Europe faces ‘collapse’ after EU waste export ban

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The European Union’s decision to ban exports of plastic waste in and outside Europe is threatening to collapse the market for the collection and recycling of plastic packaging, Belgian industry association Valipac has warned.


Norway’s parliament gives green light for controversial deep-sea mining

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Norwegian lawmakers gave the go-ahead for deep-sea mining exploration around the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard on Tuesday (9 January), a world first that has raised concerns among environmental groups.


French local authorities seek axing of EU deposit return scheme for plastic bottles

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A proposed mandatory deposit return scheme for plastic bottles should be scrapped altogether, French local representatives say, rejecting suggestions by EU member states to exempt countries that already achieve a high collection rate for plastic packaging.

Circular materials 22-12-2023

Deal on EU trash export ban hailed as end of ‘waste colonialism’

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Environmental groups have applauded a landmark political agreement reached at EU level last month to ban the export of waste for disposal both inside and outside of Europe, saying it puts an end to “waste colonialism” from rich nations.

Biomass 20-12-2023

Business leader: ‘Europe lacks a clear policy framework for bio-based products’

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Europe needs stronger policies for bio-based products in order to make it clear that virgin fossil products do not compete in the same category, Rob Beekers argues in an interview with Euractiv. Rob Beekers is Business Development Director at Cargill, an …