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EU aims to clamp down on waste with new law

March 11, 2020

The EU wants products to be recyclable, repairable and designed to last longer, according to measures proposed by the bloc's environment commissioner. The European Commission dubbed the action plan "Circular Economy."

EU Flag
Image: picture-alliance/NurPhoto/N. Economou

The European Commission is proposing more aggressive waste-reduction targets and sustainability laws, the EU's top governing body announced on Wednesday.

"The goal, in the end, is decoupling resource extraction from our economic growth," Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Commissioner Virginijus Sinkevicius told reporters in Brussels.

"The linear growth model of take, make, use and discard has reached its limits," the Lithuanian commissioner added.

Under the new "Circular Economy" action plan, products would be recyclable,  more durable and easier to repair. The bloc aims to cut waste in half by 2030.

Read more: EU unveils law committing to climate neutrality by 2050

'Textile is the new plastics'

The new legislation would also ban the destruction of unsold durable goods. Another focus is the textile industry, particularly as just 1% of the material is currently recycled.

"Textile is the new plastics," Sinkevicius said.

The EU is also set to propose a new regulatory framework for batteries, gradually phasing-out non-rechargeable ones.

The measures proposed on Wednesday would need to be approved by all 27 member states and the EU Parliament before going into effect.

jsi/dj (Reuters, dpa)

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