The European Plastics Pact was based on four aspirational objectives to achieve better lifecycle management of plastics:
Target 1 – Reusability and recyclability
Design all plastic packaging and single-use plastic products placed on the market to be reusable where possible and in any case recyclable by 2025.
The key objective for this target was that all packaging would be reusable if possible but at end of life it is all recyclable. The focus was about design for recyclability i.e. focussing on specifications that make products easier to reuse or recycle.
Target 2 – Responsible use of plastics
Move towards a more responsible use of plastic packaging and single-use plastic products, aiming to reduce virgin plastic products and packaging by at least 20% (by weight) by 2025, with half of this reduction coming from an absolute reduction in plastics.
The objective for target 2 was for a reduction in plastic packaging to be achieved by increased levels of recycled content and absolute reduction. This refers to reduction of ‘unnecessary’ plastic, without increasing use of other materials and/or generating unintended consequences. Absolute reduction can be achieved in a number of ways including reuse/refill systems. Reuse activity therefore sat in target 2.
Target 3 – Collection, sorting and recycling
Increase the collection, sorting and recycling capacity by at least 25 percentage points by 2025 and reach a level that corresponds to market demand for recycled plastics.
Target 4 – Use of recycled plastics
Increase the use of recycled plastics in new products and packaging by 2025, with plastics user companies achieving an average of at least 30% recycled plastics (by weight) in their product and packaging range.
The Roadmap outlined key outcomes and activities that need to be implemented in order to deliver the ambitions of the European Plastics Pact.