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Europe’s aluminium industry hails EU waste proposals

Europe – The European Aluminium Association (EAA) has welcomed the European Commission’s efforts to strengthen the EU’€™s waste policy framework as an important step forward in its transition to a circular economy. In this same context, the body is also calling for achievable recycling targets and accurate definitions.

‘EAA welcomes the European Commission’s package and supports many of its flagship proposals, including the new requirements on waste exports to combat illegal shipments of waste, the gradual phasing-out of landfilling of recyclable waste, the reference to recyclability and durability in eco-design requirements, and the call for a better reporting of data,’ says its director general Gerd Götz. ‘These are all essential conditions to achieve more ambitious recycling targets and to ensure a level playing field among products and materials.’

But he goes on to state that the industry is ‘deeply concerned’ by the decision to ‘split the packaging recycling target between ferrous and non-ferrous metals’. He explains: ‘This would generate extra and unnecessary costs as considerable investment will be required to put in place parallel collection and sorting infrastructure for non-ferrous metals only. Instead, measures must be taken to improve existing joint metal packaging recycling systems at much lower cost. A joint recycling target for all metals – and across the whole 28 EU member states – would maximise the contribution of Europe’s industry to resource efficiency and optimise the use of existing joint collection systems.’

And he adds: ‘The EU must strive for true recycling which maximises the value of materials’ full life-cycle. It must avoid promoting final disposal operations such as backfilling, which may stop the material cycle, particularly in the context of construction and demolition waste targets.’

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