N-VA issues persuasive plastic report

10 July 2018

The Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety of the European Parliament today approved the plastic report of MEP Mark Demesmaeker by an overwhelming majority. In the report, he makes recommendations for a firm approach to dealing with plastic waste. The text is scheduled to be voted on by the European Parliament during a plenary session in September.

Mark Demesmaeker: “The way in which plastic is produced today and often used only once is unsustainable. On top of this, of the almost 26 million tonnes of plastic waste produced in the EU each year, barely 30% is collected for recycling. This has a disastrous impact on the environment, the climate and the economy. Our seas and oceans are turning into a plastic soup. We recycle far too little, meaning we miss out on numerous opportunities to reduce CO2 emissions. We are literally letting euros leak out of our economy because value is not kept in the chain. We have to change course!”

Mark Demesmaeker considers the recent Chinese ban on the import of plastic waste an opportunity: “The momentum has come for a circular plastic economy. For years, we in Europe have outsourced our plastic waste problem for the sake of convenience. The challenge is to deal with plastic in a smart and sustainable manner so that we can stop the disastrous consequences we are seeing today and keep the value in the chain.” Better and more recycling is therefore a necessity, as is the creation of a genuine internal market for recycled plastic. In addition, more attention must be paid to waste prevention and, finally, it is important to focus strongly on continuous innovation in this context.

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