Plastic waste and recycling in the EU: numbers and facts
The European Union has published figures relating to plastic production and its recycling.
It is estimated that 39% of plastic waste is incinerated, 31% buried and only 30% is recycled!
Half of the plastic collected for recycling is exported for processing in non-EU countries. Reasons for which plastic is exported include the lack of infrastructure, technology or adequate financial resources to treat the waste locally. In the past, a significant portion of the exported plastic waste was shipped to China, however recently the country has blocked the import of plastic waste. It has therefore become urgent to find other solutions.
However, MEPs stress the need to create measures that can stimulate the market for the use of recycled plastic. These measures should include:
- Create quality standards for secondary plastic (reused)
- Create certifications that encourage trust from industry and consumers
- Introduce mandatory rules on the minimum quantities of recycled content within certain products
- Encourage member states to introduce a VAT reduction on recycled products
We hope that we will arrive at the embracement of concrete incentive measures for recycling, for both companies and households.