Three European plastics associations have joined hands to create a new stakeholder platform aimed at driving recycling efforts in the region. PlasticsEurope (Brussels / Belgium; www.plasticseurope.org), European Plastics Converters (EuPC, Brussels; www.plasticsconverters.eu) and Plastics Recyclers Europe (PRE, Brussels; www.plasticsrecyclers.eu) on 25 October announced the launch of the Polyolefin Circular Economy Platform (PCEP), which will help the industry meet the European Commissions Circular Economy targets.
A business as usual approach, the associations say, will not allow the sector to meet the target of preparing 55% of plastic packaging for reuse and recycling by 2025. The platform will be working with a 5-10 year horizon, using science-based solutions with a focus on innovation.
The priority areas of work include the development of packaging design guidelines and assessment protocols that meet the goals of the Circular Economy concept, innovation to increase the recyclability of both flexible and rigid packaging, as well as the development of EU-wide standards for sorted plastics, harmonised test methods and a certification of plastic recycling operations. Other goals include the development of end-use markets to encourage demand for recyclate, an improvement in mechanical recycling and technologies, as well as R&D efforts to come up with new technologies to convert non-mechanically recyclable plastics into feedstocks for new materials.
The platform will create a multi-stakeholder group that will seek to identify the barriers and opportunities to increase Europes recycling and work towards ensuring the supply of high quality recycled plastics for the European market, the associations said. This, they added, will drive economic growth and also allow the creation of new jobs in Europe.
To help support this goal, PlasticsEurope has set up a separate Plastics Packaging Circular Economy Group, which will work towards realising resource efficiency gains within the Circular Economy. “We increased our resources on packaging activities with the creation of a new Plastics Packaging Group to contribute towards a resource efficient circular economy. Our industry is committed to a sustainable future within a low-carbon economy and we will continue to increase our engagement with the plastics value-chain towards this common goal, commented PlasticsEurope president Karl-H. Foerster.