Action on plastics was identified as a priority in the 2015 Circular Economy Action Plan, to help European businesses and consumers to use resources in a more sustainable way. The hearing will look into the strategy on plastics in a circular economy (including action on marine litter) proposed by the EC in the context of both the Communication on A European Strategy for Plastics in a Circular Economy (COM(2018) 28 final) and the proposal for a Directive on Port Reception Facilities (COM(2018) 33 final).
As a follow-up to the Consumer Dialogues, "Les Assises des Consommateurs" (the 2018 Consumer Summit) showcased the results of this outreach and offered the opportunity for debate and conclusions.
With a view to taking stock of the Action Plan's implementation, looking at next steps and discussing the goals and practicalities of a European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform, the EESC and the European Commission co-organised a conference which took place on 9-10 March in Brussels.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is approaching its third year in the march towards realizing the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The High-level Political Forum session this year focused on the theme "Transformation towards sustainable and resilient societies". The European Economic and Social Committee was delighted to partner with several member states this year to co-host side events for knowledge exchange on important aspects that relate to the five environmental SDGs in focus at HLPF 2018.
To address planned obsolescence, protect consumers and boost the transition to a circular economy, in 2013 the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) called for a total ban on products with built-in defects designed to prematurely end a product's life. It recommended that better information to consumers on the lifespan of products should be established. On the basis of this opinion – the first European text on this topic – the European Parliament voted in July 2017 on a resolution for
a longer lifetime for products: benefits for consumers and companies.
The European Commission and the European Economic and Social Committee will host the 2019 European Circular Economy Stakeholder Conference on March 6 and 7 in Brussels.
Day 1, to be hosted by the Europan Commission, will explore the action plan as a successful framework for the transition, while discussing policies to capitalise on the current global momentum. It will also widen the discussion to consider the circular economy as an enabler to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.
Day 2 will be hosted by the EESC and is being prepared jointly with the Coordination Group members of the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform. This day will feature eight different participatory workshops, whose purpose is to share successes and identify new challenges.
The NAT Section will hold a debate on "Circular Economy Strategies and Roadmaps: Cooperation and Inclusion" at its meeting of 23rd May.
This publication presents the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform, a joint initiative by the European Commission and the European Economic and Social Committee.
Circular economy strategies have been under development in European cities, regions, and countries in the last few years. In the evolving context of the transition to a circular economy, strategies are valuable endeavours which draw attention to the topic, kickstart initiatives and bring stakeholders together. This publication is the executive summary of the study reviewing existing circular economy strategies across Europe, highlighting the different degrees of inclusiveness in terms of consultation.
The transition to the Circular Economy will impact businesses, workers and consumers in different ways/varying degrees across the economy. The Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) sector is crucial for this transition. In 2016, the consumer electronics sector alone produced 44.7 million tonnes of e-waste, with mobile phones accounting for 435 thousand tonnes, and a mere 20% being recycled. This study presents the opportunities and challenges arising from implementing a circular approach, using the mobile phone sector as an example.