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European plastics industry and value chain present their commitments and pledges for a more sustainable plastics industry

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Climate & Environment
On the 11th December 2018, 13 organisations from the entire plastics value chain hosted their first annual event “The EU Plastics Industries – Towards Circularity” and presented the status of their voluntary commitments and pledges in front of the media, NGOs and representatives of the European Commission.
 
Following an opening message from Elżbieta Bieńkowska, EU Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, the various speakers had one common message: The European plastics industry and value chain are embracing the circular economy and have developed an extensive and ambitious set of voluntary measures to close the loop for plastics. All commitments will be monitored and the industry is ready to work closely together with authorities and other stakeholders to ensure the goals are reached.
 
The achievement of the ambitious sustainability targets depends not only on the industry but requires the support of national authorities, European legislators and consumers alike. More collection and better sorting are needed to increase recycling and incorporate more recyclate into new products.
 
Some industry representatives also took the opportunity to warn against the negative impacts of the proposed single-use plastics Directive on businesses and employment in the European Union, not to mention possible unintended negative environmental impacts.
 
Presentations were made by the International Association for Soaps, Detergents and Maintenance Products (A.I.S.E.), European Carpet and Rug Association (ECRA), European Disposables and Nonwovens Association (EDANA), European Federation of Bottled Water (EFBW), European Manufacturers of Expanded Polystyrene (EUMEPS), European Plastics Converters (EuPC), Polyolefin Circular Economy Platform (PCEP), PET Sheet Europe, Petcore Europe, PlasticsEurope, Plastics Recyclers Europe (PRE), Styrenics Circular Solutions (SCS), and VinylPlus®.
 
The event “The EU Plastics Industries – Towards Circularity” will be organised on an annual basis to guarantee an open and public reporting and transparent dialogue with stakeholders on the industry’s progress.
 
About A.I.S.E.:
About A.I.S.E. is the International Association for Soaps, Detergents and Maintenance Products. Based in Brussels, A.I.S.E. has been the voice of the industry to EU regulators for 65 years. Membership consists of 29 national associations across Europe, 18 corporate members and 8 value chain partners. Through this extensive network, A.I.S.E. represents over 900 companies supplying household and professional cleaning products and services across Europe. The industry is a substantial contributor to the European economy with an annual market value of €35,9 billion, directly employing 95 000 and 360 000 through the value chain. A.I.S.E. has a long history in leading voluntary industry initiatives that focus on sustainable design, manufacturing and consumption, product safety and safe use of products by consumers and professional customers.
 
About ECRA:
ECRA (European Carpet and Rug Association) is the membership organisation for the European flooring industry with specific aims of facilitating legislative change to continuously reduce the environmental impact of the industry and to protect the consumer. It works with the EU Commission to create harmonised European standards including encouraging the use of Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for all products. Founded over 20 years ago, and working closely with GUT, it represents over 50 organisations across six countries which account for 85% by volume of European textile floor covering production. GUT ECRA is led by one Board of Directors and represents the European carpet industry at every level.
 
About EDANA:
EDANA helps its members to design their future, serving more than 250 companies in the nonwovens and related industries, across over 40 countries. Its mission is to create the foundation for sustainable growth of the nonwovens and related industries through active promotion, education and dialogue.
The European Federation of Bottled Waters (EFBW) is the voice of the bottled water industry, dedicated to promoting the unique qualities of natural mineral and spring waters. Based in Brussels EFBW is a registered international not for profit association. With a membership base of national trade associations and direct member companies, EFBW represents more than 550 natural mineral and spring water producers in Europe, most of which are small and medium-sized companies. Natural mineral water and spring water producers are pioneers in the field of sustainable resource management and proactively encourage public-private partnerships in order to safeguard underground water resources for future generations.
 
About EUMEPS:
The association for European Manufacturers of Expanded Polystyrene (EUMEPS) is the voice of the Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) industry in Brussels. Our members are 23 National Associations of Expanded Polystyrene in Europe. They represent local EPS converters, raw material suppliers, additive suppliers, EPS recyclers, and machinery provider companies. Our associated members are individual companies across the entire EPS supply chain. Altogether our membership represents 1.000 companies, most of them small and medium sized companies (SMEs), which employ directly around 60.000 people in Europe.
 
About EuPC:
European Plastics Converters (EuPC) is the leading EU-level trade association, based in Brussels, representing European plastics converting companies. Plastics converters use plastics raw materials and recycled polymers to manufacture new products. EuPC totals about 45 national as well as European plastics converting industry associations and represents more than 50,000 companies, producing over 50 million tons of plastic products every year. More than 1.6 million people are working in EU converting companies (mainly SMEs) to create a turnover in excess of € 260 billion per year.
 
About PCEP:
The Polyolefin Circular Economy Platform (PCEP) is a European joint industry value chain initiative. It has been founded by two plastics industry associations (EuPC and PlasticsEurope) in order to advance the circular economy by increasing the reuse and recycling of polyolefin based products and the use of recyclates as raw material. By working together our industry aims to ensure long-term sustainability for polyolefin products.
 
About Petcore Europe:
Petcore Europe is the association representing the complete PET value chain in Europe. Its mission is to ensure that the entire PET industry is well aligned to enhance its value and sustainable growth, to represent the PET industry before the European institutions and other stakeholders, to ensure that PET is positioned as an outstanding packaging material and recognised as environmentally sound, to support and validate innovative packaging solutions from a recycling perspective, and to work with all interested parties to ensure a continuous increase of PET post-consumer collection and recycling.
 
About PET Sheet Europe:
PET Sheet Europe (PSE) is a sector group of PET film and sheet manufacturers that have production facilities in the EU and EFTA. It was created in 2016 as a sector group of EuPC (European Plastics Converters) and represents the interests of the industry to the European legislators and other professional organisations. The main objective of PSE is to study and discuss scientific, technical, economic, regulatory and institutional matters that are of common interest to the members of the sector group and contribute to the creation of a good trading and investment environment for PET sheet producers.
 
About PlasticsEurope:
PlasticsEurope is one of the leading European trade associations with centres in Brussels, Frankfurt, London, Madrid, Milan and Paris. We are networking with European and national plastics associations and have more than 100 member companies, producing over 90% of all polymers across the EU28 member states plus Norway, Switzerland and Turkey.
 
About PRE:
Plastics Recyclers Europe is the professional representative body of plastics recyclers in Europe. PRE promotes plastics mechanical recycling and conditions that enable profitable and sustainable business, while offering a service platform to its members. Our members constitute 80% of the European recycling capacity, processing more than 3 million tonnes of collected plastics per year.
 
About Styrenics Circular Solutions:
Styrenics Circular Solutions (SCS) is a joint industry initiative to drive the shift to a more circular economy for styrenics by unlocking polystyrene’s unique circularity potential. Game-changing technologies will enable styrenic based products to be fully recycled so that they can be used again a in high-quality applications, ultimately also for food contact. SCS engages the entire value chain in the development and industrialisation of innovative recycling and waste management solutions. It aims to strengthen the sustainability of styrenic products while improving resource efficiency within the circular economy.
 
VinylPlus®:
VinylPlus® is the voluntary commitment to sustainable development by the European PVC industry. The VinylPlus® programme was developed through open dialogue with stakeholders, including industry, NGOs, regulators, civil society representatives and PVC users. The regional scope of the 10-year programme is the EU-28 plus Norway and Switzerland. VinylPlus® actively contributes to the circular economy by preventing the loss of highly valuable materials, such as quality recycled PVC, from the economy. VinylPlus® is registered as a SMART partnership on the UN Partnerships for SDGs Platform.

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