Brussel·lesEach citizen of the European Union generates on average around 180 kilograms of packaging waste per year and, if no remedy is taken, the European Commission estimates that this figure could increase to 215 by 2030. To reverse this trend , the European Union already approved last year the ban on products such as straws, plates and single-use plastic cutlery and this week the EU executive presented a new package of initiatives to “enhance the reusable packaging’ and ‘eliminating unnecessary’, ‘restricting over-packaging’ and ‘enhancing clear labeling to help recycle correctly’. Thus, Brussels wants to get the European Union to reduce the packaging waste it generates by 15% by 2040. Here is a collection of the most outstanding measures:
Take the food prepared in the lunch box with you
One of the objectives is to promote the reuse or refilling of packaging, which has registered a sharp decline in recent years. Thus, companies will have to offer “a certain percentage” of their products in reusable or refillable containers, such as takeaway drinks. “In 2040, the majority of takeaway coffees will have to be served in reusable cups or in cups that we bring from home,” said the vice-president of the European Commission, Frans Timmermans, in a press conference. Takeaway shops, for example, will also have to put the dishes in lunch boxes that are not disposable or that the customer brings.
Prohibition of plastic wrapping of fruit and vegetables
Certain types of single-use plastic wrap for food or beverages consumed inside restaurants or cafes and plastic packaging for certain fruits and vegetables sold in certain stores will be prohibited. in supermarkets The miniature containers of soaps and shampoos that are given away in many hotels will also be banned; as well as the plastic wrappers that, for example, some combs or bathing caps often come with.
Single-use home-delivered e-commerce packages will also be restricted. “The packaging can and should be done better. It has happened to everyone that they buy something on the Internet and it comes with a huge box, with a few layers to make the product look bigger,” Timmermans added.
Labeling that indicates which container each container goes into
To make it easier for citizens to recycle, each container must have a label attached indicating what material it is made of and what category of waste it belongs to. These same labels will appear on the waste collection containers and aim to dispel any doubts that may exist about which containers go in which color. It will also be very clearly stated which are the “few” wrappers that are fully compostable and can be disposed of in the organic waste. The same labeling and symbols will be used in all 27 member states of the European Union.
Return system for bottles and cans
Another of the objectives proposed by the European Commission in 2030 is that most packaging will be completely recyclable. In this sense, it proposes the creation of mandatory return and return systems for plastic bottles and aluminum cans, as is already done in some of the EU countries. In addition, it aims to oblige manufacturers to include a minimum proportion – which has not been specified – of recycled plastic in the raw material of new plastic containers. In this way, the community executive wants the value of recycled plastic to rise as a material for making wrappings.
More savings and 600,000 new jobs
Brussels assures that the “economic impact” of this new package of measures is “positive” and that it will provide employment to many Europeans. The European Commissioner for the Environment, Virginijus Sinkevičius, has said that the EU executive estimates – although he has not detailed how he calculates – that the push for reuse will generate 600,000 more new jobs in the sector so far to 2030. In addition, it predicts that each European will save almost 100 euros per year if companies transfer the cost reduction to consumers.
Source: Ara.cat – Portada by www.ara.cat.
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