APEAL, The Association of European Producers of Steel for Packaging has welcomed the report adopted by the Environment Committee (ENVI) in the European Parliament, on the Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP) 2.0 communication published by the European Commission in March 2020.
A cornerstone of the European Green Deal, the CEAP 2.0 is designed to strengthen the economy as well as protecting the environment and eliminating waste, and the report adopted today covers a diverse range of sectors including packaging. APEAL, a member of the Permanent Materials Coalition is pleased to note the report’s focus on key issues including permanent materials, landfill and separate collection.
Permanent materials concept
Alexis Van Maercke, secretary general of APEAL, said: “We were pleased to note the report recognises the importance of permanent materials like steel, stating: ‘…the need to increase the availability and quality of recyclates, focusing on the ability of a material to retain its inherent properties after recycling, and its ability to replace primary raw materials in future applications…’.”
Move away from landfill
APEAL also welcomed the stress placed on the need to ‘…increase high-quality recycling and move away from landfilling waste…’ within the report. Mr Van Maercke added: “APEAL has long supported a more ambitious approach to prevent valuable resources which could be recycled, being disposed of via landfill. Scrap is an essential component for making new steel; its use saves raw materials and energy as well as reducing emissions.”
Improving separate collection
Mr Van Maercke continued: “As APEAL’s recycling report illustrates, separate collection is the best way of guaranteeing high-quality input into recycling operations. It is encouraging therefore that the report adopted by ENVI, ‘…underlines that separate collection of waste is a prerequisite for high-quality recycling and for keeping valuable materials and products in the recycling loop; supports the Commission´s plans to propose measures to improve and harmonise existing separate collection systems, which should consider best practices in the Member States and take into account different regional and local conditions, and should not adversely impact well-functioning existing systems; calls on the Commission to ensure the proper implementation of the provisions laid down in the Waste Framework Directive…’
“By adopting the report, the European Parliament has demonstrated vision and foresight. APEAL now looks forward to the plenary vote in February, when the resolution will be a strong signal to the European Commission, the Member States and all relevant stakeholders, of the need to deliver this ambitious plan for Europe. The European Union is demonstrating global leadership in the drive to move from a linear to a real circular economy. And because steel is a model material which already achieves high recycling rates and has endless recycling potential, steel for packaging is well positioned to play a key role in this transition.”
Recycling of steel packaging in Europe recently hit a new all-time high of 82.5 per cent (2018 data) which confirms steel as Europe’s most recycled primary packaging material.