Plastic Contamination in Biowaste
Dec 15 2022
The European Circular Bioeconomy Policy Initiative (ECBPI) has urged the European Commission to take action on plastic contamination in biowaste ahead of the 2024 deadline for mandatory collections. In a report published on December 7, the ECBPI called for legislation to reduce plastic contamination in biowaste. The report, entitled Food Waste Collections: Unwrapping the biowaste potential, suggests that extracting plastics from biowaste across the EU could add up to €2bn a year to the cost of transforming biowaste into valuable biogas and biofertilisers through composting or anaerobic digestion.
At an event organized by the European Parliament Intergroup on Climate Change, Biodiversity and Sustainable Development, David Newman, co-founder of the ECBPI, explained the need for action on plastic contamination in biowaste. "Mandatory separate food waste collections are due to come into force across the EU from 2024," he said. "This leaves little time to ensure that the waste is of the highest quality – by which I mean that it is as pure as possible before it reaches composting and AD installations."
The report calls on the European Commission to act before the 2024 deadline for mandatory separate food waste collections, and proposes a number of measures to reduce plastic contamination in biowaste. These include higher disposal costs for landfill and incineration, the mandatory use of certified compostable bags for the collection of biowaste, and a ban on traditional plastic bags. The report also calls for improvements in the management of compost and AD plants.
The report was presented by MEP Sarah Wiener (Greens) at the European Parliament in Brussels, and is endorsed by Zero Waste Europe, the European Environment Bureau, and the major composting and biogas associations CIC of Italy and Cré of Ireland.
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