Free tool supports companies design circular packaging strategy

The Recycling Partnership and SYSTEMIQ launch Plastic IQ, a free tool to help US companies make their plastic packaging strategy more sustainable; tool assesses current packaging impacts from consumption through end-of-life, builds customizable action plans, and compares “circularity of packaging strategy against industry best practices”

3RI publishes guidelines for corporate plastic stewardship

Reduce, Recover, Recycle (3R) Initiative and partners’ Guidelines for Corporate Plastic Stewardship aims to guide companies’ transition toward circular plastics supply chain; outlines pathways to three commitments of increasing ambition: net zero plastic leakage, 100% recycled at end-of-life, and net circular plastic; includes example case study

EC study guides creation of sustainable-by-design criteria

European Commission (EC) releases study mapping current sustainability initiatives and research applicable to creating sustainable-by-design criteria; particular focus on materials and chemicals, including a section assessing nanomaterials; finds few policies related to the production phase of a material’s life cycle; next steps are to identify specific aspects of sustainability to be covered in the criteria and how to evaluate them

Studies investigate circular economy barriers, consumer perceptions

Recent set of articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals review current barriers in flexible plastics to achieving circular economy, recommends regulatory policies be tailored to individual steps in supply chain; consumers easily confused by plastic waste management system, recycling processes, biodegradability claims; researchers instead propose food system shift towards decentralization, shorter supply chains

Green Alliance: Europe must halve resource consumption by 2050

UK think tank’s report shows culprits of current approach to resource management, suggests solutions, advocates for target to half resource consumption by 2050; provides roadmaps for specific sectors and strategically important materials; recommends identifying and setting interim goals to encourage investments in sustainable business models and infrastructure

Safe and Sustainable by Design: 1st EU stakeholder workshop

European Commission holds workshop with stakeholders to discuss criteria for chemicals that are Safe and Sustainable by Design (SSbD); implementation of EU’s Chemical Strategy for Sustainability (CSS) will depend on clear and implementable criteria for SSbD, amongst other central pillars such as essential use and generic risk assessment

Presence of chemicals of concern hinder plastic recycling

Report published by civil society organization ChemSec finds eliminating chemicals of concern from plastic waste crucial for upscaling plastic recycling, realizing circular economy; companies struggling to comply with chemical requirements; report recommends phasing out chemicals of concern from new products, may open up substantial market opportunities

European Parliament calls for reduced material use, better ecodesign

European Parliament approves report calling for European Commission to adopt binding targets and expanded EcoDesign Directive within Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP), aims to reduce overall consumption and material use; proposes solutions to problems of higher prices for recycled materials and low availably of high-quality recycled materials

Blueprint offers vision for US recycling sector

Recycling Leadership Council releases recycling blueprint, identifies role of US federal government in modernizing and standardizing recycling system; suggests three areas for political action: clearer data collection and reporting, nationwide standards and definitions, targeted investments in the recycling sector

Stakeholders discuss global plastic treaty

Friends of Europe hosts online debate bringing together stakeholder groups from industry, regulatory agencies, and NGOs; considers how to achieve a circular plastics economy, discusses the necessity of a global plastic treaty, prevention of plastic waste trade and illegal waste dumping, extended producer responsibility schemes (EPRs), need for unified EU plastic waste market; discussions build on report by European Environment Agency, case study by Zero Waste Europe and report by Ellen MacArthur Foundation