With EU waste legislation currently under discussion in the Parliament and Council, EXPRA is calling on European policymakers to safeguard the primary role Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) has to play in transitioning towards a circular economy.
It should be acknowledged that producers and the organisations implementing EPR on their behalf perform general interest services by contributing to environmental protection, economic efficiency and social responsibility. Respectively, their non-profit character should be recognised within legislation.
EXPRA strongly welcomes the inclusion of common, general requirements for EPR schemes within the revised Waste Framework Directive (WFD). These should be maintained under the Waste Framework Directive, and tailored to the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive so as to ensure efficient and effective EPR systems which beneficially serve society.
The Alliance recalls that each stakeholder can only be made financially responsible for the costs falling under their remit. In this respect their costs need to be clearly spelt-out and properly demarcated. Furthermore companies are neither the main littering source nor have extended responsibility over it. As litter clean-up is directly linked to consumer misbehaviour, it should therefore be dealt with as a waste preventive measure for which all stakeholders share responsibility.
The debate surrounding the circular economy has also highlighted the issue of how best to calculate waste which is actually recycled. EXPRA research suggests that recycled waste should in fact be measured at the gate of the recycling plant to the recycling plant coupled with quality standards for waste materials. This will allow for quality recycling alongside reliable and feasible monitoring. Of major importance is that course Reliable data should be at the core of new waste target levels, which should be justified and technically feasible.
If appropriately developed and implemented, this revised waste legislation could prove a unique opportunity for Europe to achieve its transition to a fully circular economy – conserving our precious natural resources, creating jobs, and generating growth for years to come.

Read more