Waste prevention should always be our priority. However, even in the transition to a circular economy, residual streams from production and consumption processes will remain. It is important to ensure appropriate waste management and prevent landfilling or incineration of valuable resources. Our goal is to ensure that reliable, harmonised standards promote preparation for reuse and material-efficient recycling. This way we can turn waste into a resource and close the loop in a sustainable way by, for example, using organic waste as fertiliser, sustainable treatment of WEEE and batteries, and recovery of critical raw materials.
If Europe is serious about becoming the first climate neutral continent by 2050, circular economy needs to be at the forefront of the European Green Deal. For this, Europe must implement an ecodesign approach for sectors with the highest environmental impact, stressed ECOS, the environmental NGO expert in ecodesign and product policy.
On 11 December, the European Commission will release its Green Deal, and according to high level officials, circular economy is set to be the number one priority for Europe. This is a move ECOS fully supports, as detailed in our priority checklist published today.
In our digitalised and tech-hungry world, the amount of electronic and electrical devices is ever increasing. Sooner or later, all of these devices are discarded due to early replacement or defects. E-waste is one of the most problematic waste streams globally because of its large volume and the environmental risks it poses, largely due to hazardous substances . In 2016, more than a quarter of the 44,7 Mt of e-waste produced worldwide was generated in the EU with an average of 16,6 kg/person. So what happens with this mountain of e-waste?