The four Directives known as the “Circular Economy Package” were published in the EU Official Journal on June 14, 2018. They entered into force on July 4, 2018. From that date, Member States will have two years to transpose the rules into national legislation.
The Directives amend the following Directives of European waste legislation:
• Directive 2008/98/EC on waste
• Directive 94/62/EC on packaging and packaging waste
• Directive 2006/66/EC on batteries accumulators and waste batteries and accumulators
• Directive 2012/19/EU on waste electrical and electronic equipment
• Directive 2000/53/EC on end-of-life vehicles
• Directive 1999/31/EC on the landfill of waste
The new legislation strengthens the “waste hierarchy”, i.e. it requires Member States to take specific measures to prioritize prevention, re-use and recycling above landfilling and incineration, thus making the circular economy a reality.
Besides increased waste avoidance, higher recycling rates are foreseen: For example, the rates for packaging waste shall increase as follows: From 2025, 65% and from 2030, 70% will be recycled. A recycling rate of 50% will apply to plastic packaging until 2025. A rate of 55% applies until 2030.
Furthermore, there will be reuse targets for textiles, used electrical equipment and bulky waste. By 2025, 5% should be reused, by 2030 at least 15%.
The rate of reused sales and transport packaging placed on the market must also be increased.