Resource efficiency and waste: Implementation appraisal

23-09-2014

Environmental concerns were the first reason for the European Community to address the problem of waste generated by various sectors of the economy and a significant number of legislative acts and non-legislative actions were adopted or taken in that area since 1975. In recent years, economic arguments have come to the fore in the waste-management debate, especially with the concept of circular economy as an alternative to the existing linear model. The transition to a circular economy could ensure sustainable growth in the context of growing pressure of production and consumption on the world's resources and environment, by shifting the focus to reusing, repairing, refurbishing and recycling existing materials and products, where what used to be regarded as 'waste' can be turned into a resource and final residual waste is close to zero. The European Union's basic approach to such a transition was outlined in January 2011 by the European Commission's Communication on a resource-efficient Europe as one of the Europe 2020 flagship initiatives coordinating actions across many policy areas to secure sustainable growth and jobs through better use of resources.

Environmental concerns were the first reason for the European Community to address the problem of waste generated by various sectors of the economy and a significant number of legislative acts and non-legislative actions were adopted or taken in that area since 1975. In recent years, economic arguments have come to the fore in the waste-management debate, especially with the concept of circular economy as an alternative to the existing linear model. The transition to a circular economy could ensure sustainable growth in the context of growing pressure of production and consumption on the world's resources and environment, by shifting the focus to reusing, repairing, refurbishing and recycling existing materials and products, where what used to be regarded as 'waste' can be turned into a resource and final residual waste is close to zero. The European Union's basic approach to such a transition was outlined in January 2011 by the European Commission's Communication on a resource-efficient Europe as one of the Europe 2020 flagship initiatives coordinating actions across many policy areas to secure sustainable growth and jobs through better use of resources.